A North Carolina man, under the guise of being an Army three-star general, headed into a classified briefing and flew a helicopter to the headquarters of a major tech company near Raleigh.
A grand jury indicted Christian Gerald Desgroux, 57, on charges of pretending to be a U.S. Army lieutenant general, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina announced in a news release on Wednesday.
Desgroux claimed the authority to land a helicopter at Statistical Analysis Systems headquarters in Cary, North Carolina, so a passenger could attend a classified briefing on Nov. 6.
If convicted of this charge, the North Carolinian would face maximum penalties of 3 years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine, according to the Department of Justice.
“He was not a SAS employee and had no affiliation with our company,” SAS spokeswoman Shannon Heath told WRAL.
“At the time of the incident, SAS Security contacted local authorities, who handled the situation. This was an isolated incident,” she added.
SAS is a developer of analytics software, which turns “large amounts of data into knowledge you can use.”
“The company employs nearly 6,000 workers at its 900-acre campus,” according to Fox News.
WRAL reported that Desgroux has had several past run-ins with the law.
Last year, he was charged with misdemeanor stalking, fleeing from arrest, misuse of the 911 system, and assaulting a woman, according to court records.
This year, authorities indicted him for violating a court order and felony conversion.
Felony conversion, under North Carolina law, involves taking the property of another, without paying the owner or seeking his permission.
Desgroux’s current case is being investigated by the Department of Homeland Security and the Defense Criminal Investigative Service.
According to Legal Beagle, impersonating a military officer is a serious offense.
The site recommends reporting the crime to the respective military services’ criminal units.
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