US soldier accused of selling top secrets

Sergeant Korbein Schultz had a top secret security clearance.

Sergeant Korbein Schultz had a top secret security clearance. Photo: AAP

A soldier has been arrested on accusations of selling sensitive information related to US military capabilities.

Sergeant Korbein Schultz, who is also an intelligence analyst, is accused in a six-count indictment of charges including conspiring to obtain and disclose military defence information and bribery of a public official.

The 24-year-old was arrested at Fort Campbell, on the Tennessee-Kentucky border, shortly after the indictment was released on Thursday.

“The men and women of the United States armed forces dedicate their lives to maintain our national security,” Henry C Leventis, US attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee, told reporters. 

“Illegal dissemination of national defence information puts our country, our fellow citizens, members of our military and our allies at risk.”

The indictment alleges Schultz – who had a top secret security clearance – conspired with an individual identified only as “Conspirator A” to disclose various documents, photographs and other national defence materials since June 2022. 

The indictment claims Schultz was recruited by the individual not only due to his security clearance but also because he was tasked with gathering sensitive US military information. 

Some of the information that Schultz allegedly gave to the individual included information related to the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, hypersonic equipment, studies on future developments of US military forces and studies on military drills and operations in major countries such as China. 

The indictment outlines that Schultz was initially asked to provide documents detailing lessons that could be learned from Russia’s war with Ukraine and how those lessons could be applied to the US helping Taiwan in the event of an attack. 

Schultz was paid $US200 ($300) for that information, which prompted Conspirator A to ask for a “long-term partnership”. 

Conspirator A, a foreign national purporting to reside in Hong Kong, later suggested Schultz could earn more money if he handed over “internal only” material rather than unclassified documents. 

In total, Shultz received at least 14 payments totalling $US42,000. 

The case is the latest in a series of prosecutions of current or former military members accused of illegally disclosing sensitive government secrets.

In April 2023, Massachusetts Air National Guard member Jack Teixeira was charged with leaking highly classified military documents about Russia’s war in Ukraine on social media platform Discord.

He pleaded guilty on Monday in a deal with prosecutors that calls for him to serve at least 11 years in prison.


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