Jack Teixeira has already faced one trial in connection with America’s most sweeping national security leak in years. Now he may face two.

The Air Force has charged Teixeira, an airman 1st class in the Massachusetts Air National Guard, with one count of disobeying a lawful order and two counts of obstructing justice under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, a service spokesperson said Wednesday.

The service alleges Teixeira, 22, accessed a trove of U.S. military secrets unrelated to his job as an information technology specialist on military communications networks, then tried to dispose of evidence as criminal proceedings loomed.

Teixeira was convicted in federal court earlier this year of illegally collecting highly classified military documents about the war in Ukraine and other national security matters, then leaking them on the social media platform Discord over the course of several months. He pleaded guilty to all six charges against him and agreed to a 16-year prison sentence.

On Wednesday, the Air Force said it has opted to prosecute Teixeira for “alleged misconduct related to his military duties” because the airman was on Title 10 active duty orders — meaning he was tasked to a federal mission rather than one run by the state — at the time of the purported crimes.

The service argues Teixeira disobeyed orders to stop looking at military documents outside his purview on multiple occasions between September 2022 and April 2023, according to a redacted charge sheet obtained by Air Force Times on Wednesday.

The Discord leaks revealed secret assessments of troop movements in Ukraine and the flow of supplies and equipment to Ukrainian troops, among other Pentagon secrets. Members of Teixeira’s Discord group have described the airman as someone “looking to show off,” rather than to become a whistleblower.

An Air Force probe found that Teixeira’s superiors repeatedly told him to stop seeking out classified intelligence but failed to report the breaches to the proper security officials or ensure he had destroyed his notes. The service has disciplined 15 people in connection with the leak.

The Air Force also alleges Teixeira disposed of an iPad, computer hard drive and cell phone, as well as deleted Discord messages, in the weeks leading up to his arrest on April 13, 2023. Prosecutors at Teixeira’s civilian trial said authorities had found a smashed tablet, laptop and Xbox gaming console in a dumpster at his house, the Associated Press reported in March.

An officer will review the new charges at a preliminary hearing on May 14 at Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts, to determine whether there is enough evidence to begin a special court-martial.

If Teixeira is also convicted by a military judge or jury of violating Articles 92 and 131b of the UCMJ, he faces up to a year in prison, forfeiture of pay and a bad-conduct discharge. The Air Force may also demote him to a lower enlisted rank.

Michael Bachrach, Teixeira’s attorney, told the Associated Press in March that the airman was “significantly remorseful.”

“He has accepted full responsibility for his conduct,” Bachrach said.

Teixeira remains in the Air National Guard in an unpaid status, the Air Force said in March. He has been jailed since his arrest.

This story was updated to reflect how long Teixeira can be imprisoned if convicted at a special court-martial. He may face up to a year behind bars.

Rachel Cohen is the editor of Air Force Times. She joined the publication as its senior reporter in March 2021. Her work has appeared in the Washington Post, the Frederick News-Post (Md.), Air and Space Forces Magazine, Inside Defense, Inside Health Policy and elsewhere.

In Other News
Load More