WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A former U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency officer pleaded guilty to attempted espionage for China, the Justice Department said on Friday.
The officer, Ron Rockwell Hansen, was accused of trying to transmit classified U.S. national defense information to China and receiving "hundreds of thousands of dollars" while illegally acting as an agent for the Chinese government.
Hansen started working at the DIA, which specializes in military intelligence, in 2006 after his retirement from the U.S. Army, and held a top-secret security clearance for many years, according to the Justice Department.
In 2014, a Chinese intelligence service recruited Hansen, the Justice Department said.
FBI agents took Hansen into custody in June, when he was traveling to the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to take a connecting flight to China.
He faces up to 15 years in prison. His sentencing will take place on Sept. 24. It was not immediately clear who was representing Hansen in his case.
Two airmen were administratively punished for drinking at the missile launch control center for 150 nuclear LGM-30G Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missiles at F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming, the Air Force confirmed to Task & Purpose on Friday.
Two F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters recently flew a mission in the Middle East in "beast mode," meaning they were loaded up with as much firepower as they could carry.
The F-35s with the 4th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron took off from Al Dhafra Air Base, United Arab Emirates to execute a mission in support of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, Air Forces Central Command revealed. The fifth-generation fighters sacrificed their high-end stealth to fly with a full loadout of weaponry on their wings.
The U.S. Senate closed out the week before Memorial Day by confirming Gen. James McConville as the Army's new chief of staff and Adm. Bill Moran as the Navy's new chief of naval operations.
McConville, previously vice chief of staff of the Army, was confirmed on Thursday along with his successor, Lt Gen. Joseph Marin. Moran, currently vice chief of naval operations, was confirmed Friday along with his successor, Vice Adm. Robert Burke.
The Pentagon is producing precisely diddly-squat in terms of proof that Iran is behind recent attacks in the Middle East, requiring more U.S. troops be sent to the region.
Adm. Michael Gilday, director of the Joint Staff, said on Friday that the U.S. military is extending the deployment of about 600 troops with four Patriot missile batteries already in the region and sending close to 1,000 other service members to the Middle East in response to an Iranian "campaign" against U.S. forces.