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    United States Attorney's Office
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    Thom Mrozek
    Public Affairs Officer

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    Release No. 08-092

    July 2, 2008


    A former Boeing engineer man pleaded guilty late this afternoon to a federal charge of unauthorized possession of defense information for taking documents classified as “secret” and “top secret” from his office to his Valley Village home.

    Abraham Lesnik, 62, who until last year worked at a Boeing facility in El Segundo, pleaded guilty to the felony charge before United States District Judge Florence-Marie Cooper.

    According to court documents and statements made in court today, Lesnik worked on a program that had classified elements under a contract with a component of the United States Department of Defense. Lesnik held a “Top Secret” Department of Defense security clearance. Lesnik’s workplace was approved by the government as a Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility.

    During his employment at Boeing, Lesnik repeatedly brought defense-related classified information from his workplace to his home by using a flash drive, a small device that plugged into his work computer and allowed him to download information onto the device. He then took the information home with him on that flash drive. In this way, Lesnik accumulated a very large number of classified documents at his residence. Lesnik admitted today that he unlawfully retained 11 of these documents.

    “The government has established very strict rules to protect its secrets to protect our national security,” said United States Attorney Thomas P. O’Brien. “Dr. Lesnik violated these important secrecy rules on a regular basis, which compromised the system established to protect the United States.”

    Salvador Hernandez, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI in Los Angeles, stated: "The FBI places a high priority on investigations into compromised classified information, as well as any violation of the law by those entrusted with following rules designed to protect documents related to our national defense.”

    Judge Cooper is scheduled to sentence Lesnik on October 6. As a result of the guilty plea, Lesnik faces a statutory maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison.

    The case against Lesnik was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.


    Release No. 08-092
    Return to the 2008 Press Release Index