U.S. Army Intelligence Analyst Arrested and Charged with Selling Classified Information for $42k

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What to Know:

The United States Department of Justice (DoJ) has announced that U.S. Army Sergeant Korbein Schultz, an intelligence analyst with the 506th Infantry Battalion out of at Fort Campbell, was arrested and charged with with conspiracy to obtain and disclose national defense information, exporting technical data related to defense articles without a license, conspiracy to export defense articles without a license, and bribery of a public official in relation to selling classified material to a “geopolitical consulting firm based overseas” for a total of $42,000.

The Case:

According to the DoJ, starting in June 2022, Schultz and an unnamed conspirator claiming to work for a “geopolitical consulting firm based overseas” conspired “to disclose documents, writings, plans, maps, notes, and photographs relating to national defense as well as information relating to national defense.”

The conspirator asked Schultz to obtain classified information on a “variety of U.S. military weapons systems, including classified information, and information related to the United States’ potential plans in the event that Taiwan came under military attack,” which included “documents related to the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS), information on hypersonic equipment, studies on the future development of U.S. military forces, studies on major countries such as the People’s Republic of China, and summaries of military drills and operations.”

Likewise, Schultz sent the conspirator “an Air Force Tactics Techniques and Procedures manual for the HH-60W helicopter, an Air Force Tactics Techniques and Procedures manual for the F22-A fighter aircraft, and an Air Force Tactics Techniques and Procedures manual for intercontinental ballistic missiles.”

Over the course of this time and up until his arrest, Schultz received a total of $42,000 amongst 14 payments by the conspirator.

While not explicitly specified, it is likely that the conspirator is a Chinese intelligence asset as the information requested involves American military capabilities and intelligence regarding the Indo-Pacific.

Speaking on the case, Assistant Attorney General Matthew G. Olsen of the Justice Department’s National Security Division stated that “Mr. Schultz, a member of the U.S. Army, stands accused of conspiring to obtain and provide national defense information to an individual overseas. As part of the conspiracy, the defendant provided sensitive government information to his coconspirator in exchange for thousands of dollars, placing personal profit above the security of the American people.”

“Today’s arrest shows that such a betrayal does not pay — the Department of Justice is committed to identifying and holding accountable those who would break their oath to protect our nation’s secrets,” he added.

Increased Counter Intelligence Threats:

This just marks the latest instance of American servicemen selling classified information to what is most likely Chinese intelligence.

This January, Navy Petty Officer Wenheng Zhao has been sentenced today to 27 months in prison and ordered to pay a $5,500 fine for “transmitting sensitive U.S. military information to an intelligence officer from the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in exchange for bribery payments.”

According to the DoJ, Zhao, who was stationed at Naval Base Ventura County in Port Hueneme at the time, “sent the Chinese military officer non-public and controlled operational plans for a large-scale U.S. military exercise in the Indo-Pacific Region, which detailed the specific location and timing of Naval force movements, amphibious landings, maritime operations and logistics support.” Likewise, Zhao “photographed electrical diagrams and blueprints for a radar system stationed on a U.S. military base in Okinawa, Japan.”

In a similar case, Navy Petty Officer Jinchao We was arrested and charged in August 2023 with “conspiracy to send national defense information to an intelligence officer working for the People’s Republic of China.”

Wei, a machinist’s mate stationed at Naval Base San Diego aboard the Wasp-class Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) USS Essex, allegedly began communicating with a Chinese intelligence officer in February 2022. According to the Justice Department, the intelligence officer “requested that Wei provide information about the U.S.S. Essex and other Navy ships. Specifically, the Chinese intelligence officer tasked Wei with passing him photos, videos and documents concerning U.S. Navy ships and their systems.”

Between March 2022 until his arrest, Wei “sent photographs and videos of the Essex, disclosed the locations of various Navy ships and described defensive weapons of the Essex.” Likewise, Wei handed over dozens of technical documents and manuals that contained information on export control warnings, power, steering, aircraft and deck elevators, damage and casualty controls, berthing quarters locations, weapons systems, and upgrades aboard the Essex and similar ships. In exchange, Wei was paid thousands of dollars.