Navy sailor Kristian Saucier was recently sentenced to prison for taking pictures of sensitive areas of the USS Alexandria in 2009, and now his mother wants to know why he’s in prison, while Hillary Clinton has been allowed to walk free after being extremely careless with handling classified information.
The sailor’s mother, Kathleen Saucier, said she wants the Democratic presidential nominee to be held to the same standard as her son or even to a higher standard, in an interview with the military blog Task & Purpose Friday. She knows it’s too late to get her son out of jail or reverse the charges, but she hopes that by making the issue public she’ll be able to raise awareness of the double standard.
In 2009, 22-year-old machinist mate Kristian took pictures of confidential/restricted areas on the USS Alexandria — apparently for a memory of his time in the Navy. But when he realized that he was under investigation by the FBI and Naval Criminal Investigative Service, he destroyed evidence of the photos after an interview in 2012, saying he was “freaked out.”
Lawyers for Kristian attempted to use the “Clinton defense” in his case, but prosecutors laughed it off, arguing the defense was “grasping at highly imaginative and speculative straws in trying to further draw a comparison to the matter of Secretary Hillary Clinton based upon virtually no understanding and knowledge of the facts involved, the information at issue, not to mention any issues of intent and knowledge.”
U.S. District Judge Stefan Underhill agreed wholeheartedly with the prosecutors, and sentenced Kristian in August to one year in prison. “The question of selective prosecution is a very tenuous issue to raise at the time of sentencing,” Underhill said.
He also stated Kristian would be subject to house confinement for an additional six months because he held defense information without authorization. Still, Underhill didn’t believe Kristian had any intent to distribute those photos.
In contrast, the Department of Justice closed the case against Clinton in July, after the FBI recommended the department pursue no criminal charges. FBI Director James Comey said the FBI found Clinton demonstrated no intent to intentionally misuses classified information, even if she was extremely careless in the way she conducted her email affairs on a private server.
For now, Kristian is spending time with his daughter before he reports to prison on October 12 for a year. He has been given an “other-than-honorable” discharge from the Navy.
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