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Former Navy sailor convicted of attempted espionage

NORFOLK, VA—Robert Patrick Hoffman, II, 40, of Virginia Beach, Virginia, was convicted today by a federal jury of attempting to provide classified information to individuals whom he believed to be representatives of the Russian Federation.

Neil H. MacBride, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Lisa Monaco, Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s National Security Division; Royce E. Curtin, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office; and Charles T. May, Special Agent in Charge of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) Norfolk Field Office, made the announcement.

Hoffman faces a maximum penalty of life in prison when he is sentenced on December 2, 2013.

Hoffman was indicted on May 8, 2013, in a one-count superseding indictment charging him with attempted espionage. According to court records and the evidence at trial, Hoffman is a U.S. citizen born in Buffalo, New York, who served for 20 years in the U.S. Navy until his retirement on November 1, 2011. While serving in the navy, Hoffman held security clearances that granted him access to classified and national defense information relating to programs and operations in which he participated. Even though he repeatedly signed agreements to not disclose that sensitive information, on October 21, 2012, he passed classified information to what he believed to be the Russian Federation. Hoffman, in fact, delivered the information to the FBI, which was conducting an undercover operation.

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