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A military court has found a US Navy sailor guilty of sharing classified information with a foreign government representative. 

US Navy Chief Petty Officer Bryce Pedicini, formerly stationed on a guided-missile destroyer in Japan, faced charges including attempted espionage and disobeying orders. The Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) said, “This guilty verdict holds Mr. Pedicini to account for his betrayal of his country and fellow service members.”

Pedicini Bryce

Pedicini was arrested on May 19, 2023, after a thorough investigation by the NCIS revealed his illicit activities between November 2022 and February 2023. He attempted to pass on sensitive national defense materials by photographing his computer screen aboard the USS Higgins, aiming to share these images with his foreign contact. This breach involved multiple instances of transferring critical information, which Pedicini knew could harm the United States.

The foreign contact allegedly received the information under the pretense of conducting academic research, a method noted by the NCIS as a growing strategy for extracting classified data. NCIS Director Omar Lopez said that “adversaries of the United States are unrelenting in their attempts to degrade our military superiority.”

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The identity of the foreign nation involved and the exact nature of the information leaked have yet to be fully disclosed. Despite this, some have speculated that China could be the culprit after similar incidents with US Navy personnel being compromised by the Chinese government. 

A military judge is scheduled to sentence Pedicini on May 7. 

Digging Deeper: 

Pedicini, a Nashville native and a Navy veteran since 2007, had previously served on the USS Curtis Wilbur, where he managed sophisticated weaponry and defense systems.


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