Thursday, February 23, 2006

Marines arrested in military gear thefts from Camp Pendleton

SAN DIEGO - Several Marines have been arrested on charges of working with a group that stole ballistic vests and other gear from Camp Pendleton and sold it on the Internet, authorities said.

The investigation unfolded amid widespread criticism that U.S. troops in war zones lacked body armor.

Authorities have arrested nine people so far, including several Pendleton-based Marines, the Department of Homeland Security said in a press release Wednesday. Additional arrests were expected.

The nine include Erika Jardine, who was sentenced Wednesday to six months in prison by Judge Michael Baylson in U.S. District Court in Pennsylvania. The Vista resident and civilian pleaded guilty in November to one count of exporting arms without a license and one count of selling stolen U.S. government property.

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