() — The Massachusetts Air National Guardsman who is accused of posting a large number of classified documents on social media asked a judge Monday to reconsider his detention, saying he faces the same federal charges as the former US president. United States, Donald Trump, and that prosecutors did not oppose his release.
In May, a Massachusetts judge ruled that 21-year-old Jack Teixeira would remain in jail while awaiting trial on charges under the Espionage Act after prosecutors argued that he callously handled highly sensitive national security information during his short tenure in the National Guard. Investigating Judge David Hennessy said Teixeira represented a continuing threat to national security.
Teixeira’s lawyers argued in a new filing Monday that the judge should reverse his decision to keep Teixeira in custody, pointing to several other criminal defendants who were released while awaiting trial, including Trump and his co-defendant Walt Nauta.
“Speculation that Mr. Teixeira is a flight risk by virtue of what he knows is completely undermined by the government’s reasoned decision not to seek pretrial detention in other espionage cases, including the most recent one for former President Donald Trump or his personal adviser, Waltine Nauta, both charged with, among other things, mishandling of classified national security information and conspiracy to obstruct justice,” Teixeira’s lawyers wrote.
Their lawyers also said of Trump and Nauta: “the government, without any suggestion that the information known to them could put them at a serious flight risk, determined that their withheld knowledge did not pose a serious flight risk and advocated for their release under unrestricted personal acknowledgment”.
Defense attorneys further wrote that both Trump and Nauta “possessed extraordinary means to flee the United States. However, the flight risk posed by his knowledge of national security information and abnormal ability to flee did not even result in a request to surrender his passport.”
“The government’s harebrained approach to pretrial release in these cases demonstrates that its argument for Mr. Teixeira’s pretrial detention based on the knowledge it allegedly retains is illusory,” Teixeira’s lawyers wrote.
Teixeira has pleaded not guilty to various federal charges. Trump and Nauta have also pleaded not guilty in their criminal case.
According to charging documents, Teixeira despite an authorization to access highly secret security areas and allegedly began posting information about classified documents online around December 2022, and photos of documents in January. The documents, some of which have been reviewed by , included a wide range of highly classified information, including wiretaps on key allies and adversaries and hard-hitting assessments of the state of the war in Ukraine.