On Tuesday, FBI Director James Comey announced his recommendation for no files to be charged against Hillary Clinton for mishandling classified information on a private email server while serving as Secretary of State.
In his announcement, Comey said that “no reasonable prosecutor” would bring the case to court based on how “similar situations have been handled into the past.” However, in 2015, a similar case arose when a Naval Reservist mishandled classified information.
In a very similar case to that of Hillary Clinton’s, Assistant US attorneys Jean M. Hobler and Lee S. Bickley successfully prosecuted Naval Reservist Bryan Nishimura.
According to court documents, Nishimura was deployed in Afghanistan in 2007 and 2008. In 2012, he admitted to Naval personnel that he handled classified materials inappropriately while deployed in Afghanistan.
As a Regional Engineer for the U.S. Military in Afghanistan, “Nishimura had access to classified briefings and digital records that could only be retained and viewed on authorized government computers,” according to the FBI’s investigation.
“Nishimura, however, caused the materials to be downloaded and stored on his personal, unclassified electronic devices and storage media. He carried such classified materials on his unauthorized media when he traveled off-base in Afghanistan and, ultimately, carried those materials back to the United States at the end of his deployment,” The FBI’s investigation wrote.
Nishimura then copied the materials onto at least one more unauthorized and unclassified system. Nishimura later admitted that he destroyed large amounts of unclassified material he had at his home.
Similar to Clinton, the FBI found that they “did not reveal evidence that Nishimura intended to distribute classified information to unauthorized personnel.”
Nishimura was then sentenced to “two years probation, a $7,500 fine and forfeiture personal media containing classified materials. Nishimura was further ordered to surrender any currently held security clearance and to never again seek such a clearance.”