US Air National Guardsman Jack Teixeira, 21, in court for first time as he's charged with leaking secret Pentagon docs | The Sun

A US Air National Guardsman has appeared in court on Friday after he was arrested for allegedly sharing top-secret Pentagon files with his gamer pals.

Jack Teixeira, 21, was arraigned in a Boston courtroom and charged with two federal counts, including unauthorized detention and transmission of national defense information and unauthorized removal of classified information and defense materials.

The 21-year-old Massachusetts Air National Guardsman was handcuffed as he entered the courtroom shortly after 10am wearing hiking boots and a tan shirt and pants.

The suspect did not enter a plea and was ordered detained pending a detention hearing set for April 19.

Teixeria's father shouted during the hearing, "I love you, Jack!" to which the shackled suspect responded: "I love you, Dad," according to Fox News.

Teixeira, who was most recently stationed at Otis Air National Guard Base as a member of the 102nd Intelligence Wing, held a top security clearance based on his training and experience, according to court documents.

However, federal officials said Teixeira began sharing classified documents with his private Discord gaming group called Thug Shaker Central, which consisted of roughly 20 to 30 teens and young men.

The oddball group became a "tight-knit family" after the world went into lockdown during the Covid-19 pandemic, and bonded by their "mutual love of guns, military gear and God," members told The Washington Post.

Teixeira is accused of sharing photos of classified national security documents with his pals over a period of months dating back to December 2022.

At first, he shared typed text before sending pictures of actual Pentagon papers because he “had become concerned that he may be discovered making the transcriptions of text in the workplace,” according to an affidavit.

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The top-secret documents came to light in early April after being reported by The New York Times and a Russian news outlet.

Teixeira used his government computer to search the word "leak" and "classified intelligence reporting" on April 6, the day the news of the documents became public, according to court docs.

The Washington Post said it reviewed about 300 photos of classified documents the suspect allegedly leaked, most of which the report said have not been made public.

The serious security breach revealed details of US and Nato plans to help Ukraine prepare ahead of a spring offensive against Russia.

The documents also contained sensitive information, including charts and details about weapons deliveries and battalion strengths.

In what can be considered one of the worst intelligence breaches in US history, the leak fuelled the fire of speculation about Vladimir Putin's health amid rumors he is battling cancer.

The docs suggested that the Russian leader is undergoing chemotherapy while his inner circle could be using his deteriorating health to plot against him.

The leaked military documents showed that a British spy plane narrowly avoided being shot down by the Russians due to a missile malfunction.

A Russian jet was flying above the Black Sea when its pilot believed he had permission to fire, according to the report.

Fortunately, the missile malfunctioned and a potentially catastrophic incident was averted.

The docs also included information about China, suggesting that Beijing has secretly launched a 6,500mph hypersonic missile that could beat US defense systems.

One of China's experimental missiles, the DF-27 hypersonic glide vehicle, was launched on February 25 and flew for 12 minutes over a distance of 1,300 miles.


On Thursday, FBI agents stormed Teixeira's mother's property in North Dighton, Massachusetts.

US Attorney General Merrick Garland said Teixeira was arrested "without incident."

Helicopter footage showed the suspect – in red shorts with his hands behind his back – being placed by heavily-armed agents into an unmarked sports utility vehicle in a forested area.

Before his arrest, Teixeira frantically joined a call with pals from the Discord gaming community.

According to a friend who spoke to The Times, it sounded like he was in a speeding car.

Teixeira is said to have told them: "Guys, it’s been good – I love you all.

"I never wanted it to get like this. I prayed to God that this would never happen.

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"And I prayed and prayed and prayed. Only God can decide what happens from now on."

Pentagon spokesman Brig. General Patrick Ryder called the leak a "deliberate criminal act."

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