Former Navy Sailor Convicted of Attempted Espionage
Robert Patrick Hoffman, II, 40, of Virginia Beach, Virginia, has been convicted by a federal jury of attempting to provide classified information to individuals whom he believed to be representatives of the Russian Federation.
Hoffman faces a maximum penalty of life in prison when he is sentenced on December 2, 2013.
He 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.
This case was investigated by the FBI and NCIS. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Robert J. Krask and Alan M. Salsbury and Trial Attorney Heather M. Schmidt of the Counterespionage Section of the Justice Department’s National Security Division are prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.