Navy Engineer sentenced for mishandling classified material, no charges for Clinton

Clinton testifying before the House Select Committee on Benghazi on October 22, 2015

Just over a year ago a US Navy engineer stationed in California was sentenced for mishandling classified material and was punished for it.

According to the Navy Times, a federal attorney announced in July of last year that Bryan Nishimura pleaded guilty to unauthorized removal and retention of classified materials.

The Naval reservist -who was deployed to Afghanistan in 2007 and 2008 as a regional engineer- admitted to downloading classified briefings and records after an FBI search of his home turned up classified materials, though there was no evidence that Nishimura ever intended to distribute them.

Yesterday, FBI director James Comey recommended that no charges be pressed against Hillary Clinton after she exhibited “extremely careless” mishandling of over 110 emails- of which were contained information of various secrecy levels.

Comey stated that it is very likely that Clinton’s emails were intercepted but argued that it was not criminally punishable because it was not her intent “mishandle” the information.

Just last month, former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld criticized the former Secretary of State, saying that that “if she were a sergeant in the Army or a yeoman in the Navy, she’d probably be indicted.”

While the FBI determined that Clinton’s conduct revealed no “intentional misconduct or indications of disloyalty to the United States or efforts to obstruct justice.”

In his statement yesterday, Comey said that “In looking back at our investigations into mishandling or removal of classified information, we cannot find a case that would support bringing criminal charges on these facts. All the cases prosecuted involved some combination of: clearly intentional and willful mishandling of classified information; or vast quantities of materials exposed in such a way as to support an inference of intentional misconduct; or indications of disloyalty to the United States; or efforts to obstruct justice. We do not see those things here.”

However, Comey clarified that his statement was not to suggest that “in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences”.

Nishimura was sentenced to two years of probation and a $7,500 fine, and was ordered to surrender his security clearance. In addition, he will no longer be eligible for a security clearance in the future.

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