U.S. authorities were able to track down the whereabouts of Jack Teixeirasuspected of having leaked the official documents of the Pentagon through social networks, thanks to his account at SteamPC video game platform.
The federal government charged Teixeira with illegally taking national defense information and classified items after a swift investigation focused on his digital trail.
As Christian Triebert of The New York Timesits investigative journalism team identified Teixeira by finding an account of Instagram mentioned in his profile on Steam.
To confirm, images of the granite table and majolica tiles that also appear in photographs with official Department of Justice documents could be seen on Instagram.
The suspect has not yet entered a plea and will face a hearing on April 19. The two charges against him carry a combined maximum sentence of up to 15 years in prison.
What is he charged with?
Teixeira, a member of the Air National Guard in Massachusetts, allegedly began sharing the documents on a server Discord oriented to Minecraft by the end of 2022.
He initially transcribed them himself, but later published photographs of the trades taken by him. He had a channel in which only males with a fondness for arms and religion could join.
The documents include large volumes of information on the Russian invasion of Ukraine, including Ukrainian strategy, as well as Russian offers to secure arms from Egypt and Turkey. The files also show how the US spies on allies and monitors their activity, such as interest in UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
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