Navy Sailor Charged With Giving Intel to a Russian

Charles T. Briggs was also hit with child pornography charges
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 17, 2020 7:44 AM CDT
Navy Sailor Accused of Passing Classified Info to Russian
A hangar at Offutt Air Force Base in Bellevue, Neb., is flooded by waters from the Missouri River on March 17, 2019.   (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

A US Navy sailor based out of Portsmouth, Va., is heading to a general court-martial next week, accused of handing over classified information to a Russian he reportedly knew. Per a charge sheet cited by the Virginian-Pilot, Chief Petty Officer Charles T. Briggs is said to have used a government computer on or around Jan. 9 of last year at Nebraska's Offutt Air Force Base, where he was stationed at the time, to acquire said secret information, which he had reason to think could "injure the United States or benefit a foreign national." Briggs then allegedly passed that information on to a "Russian national" not green-lit to have it.

Military court documents note it's not clear what the relationship between Briggs and the Russian is, or what kind of information Briggs allegedly handed over. Briggs, who now works in IT at the Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, has been hit with charges including unauthorized distribution of classified information obtained from a government computer, obstructing justice, and communicating defense information, among others. He also saw charges related to child pornography. Briggs is set to be arraigned Wednesday. (More classified information stories.)

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