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US Navy sailor convicted of passing classified information to a Russian

An aerial view of Naval Medical Center Portsmouth. (Stephen M. Katz / The Virginian-Pilot/TNS)
December 10, 2020

A Medical Center Portsmouth sailor was convicted Tuesday on a charge of passing on classified information to a Russian national.

Chief Petty Officer Charles T. Briggs pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 18 months of confinement, Navy Region Mid-Atlantic said. He also pleaded guilty to charges of making false official statements three times, for which he was sentenced to confinement totaling an additional 13 months. The sentences are to be served consecutively.

Briggs was also sentenced to a reduction in rank to E-4.

Briggs was accused of obtaining classified information while he was stationed at Offutt Air Force Base in 2018 and early 2019, and passing that information on to Russian national. The Navy’s charge sheet said he had reason to believe the information could be harmful to the United States.

He was also accused of lying about connections to a Russian national and an Italian citizen, and about a trip he made to Serbia. The charges did not describe the information involved or provide details about his connection to either person.

Charges that he obstructed justice and possessed and attempted to view child pornography were dismissed.

Briggs worked in information and technology at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth when he was charged.

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(c) 2020 The Virginian-Pilot

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