The man accused of leaking sensitive Ukrainian Pentagon documents had previously been warned to take notes on classified information, a court filing has revealed.
Lawyers for the US government made the revelation in court documents while asking a judge to keep Jack Teixeira locked up awaiting trial.
He is accused of sharing highly classified documents on Discord, a chat platform often used by people who play video games. Teixeira did not plead guilty.
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The leaks potentially revealed hundreds of pages of intelligence on Russian efforts in Ukraine and spying on US allies.
In the latest court filing, prosecutors told a judge that Teixeira had already been questioned by his superiors twice in the past year about “concerning actions” he had taken.
According to a memo from the Air National Guard’s 102nd Intelligence Wing in September, Teixeira was caught taking notes on classified information and putting it in his pocket.
He was told to stop taking notes on classified information, he adds.
In a separate memo from a month later, a superior was told that Teixeira was “potentially ignoring the order to cease and desist from delving deep into intelligence information” given to him the previous month, and had attended a meeting and asked for “very specific information of the questions”.
He was then told again to concentrate on his own work and not to “deep dive into classified information”.
Another February memo said he was seen viewing information “which was not related to his primary function and was related to the field of intelligence.”
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Behind the veil of the Discord platform where American secrets have been revealed
The accused had previously been ordered to focus on his own professional duties and “not to pursue intelligence products,” the memo said.
“The defendant even continued to share information with his associates online, defying these admonitions and increasing his efforts to cover up his unlawful conduct,” prosecutors wrote.
Lawyers argue Teixeira should be released
Teixeira’s lawyers have asked judges to release him to his father’s home, arguing in their own filing that there have been other cases tried under the Espionage Act where the accused was released from prison, adding that there is no allegation that he intended the materials to be distributed widely.
This is disputed by prosecutors, who in their filing say that one of the servers Teixeira posted on had at least 150 users at the time he shared the information, and “may now have many more users who actively seek access to information”.
“Among the people with whom the accused shared government information, there are a number of people who said they resided in other countries and who logged into the social media platform using foreign IP addresses,” prosecutors wrote.
They added that in posts Teixeira had bragged about the amount of information he had, writing: “The information I give here is less than half of what is available.”
The judge in charge of the case has not yet made a decision on Teixeira’s detention.
Earlier court records show he kept an arsenal of weapons before his arrest.