Obtaining Security Clearance

A Rare Allegiance Issue Security Clearance Appeal

A recent Defense Office of Hearing and Appeals (DOHA) case caught my eye because it involved the rarely used adjudicative guideline pertaining to allegiance to the United States. Here is a quick summary of the case:

The DOD CAF had issued a Statement of Reasons to a defense contractor citing Guideline A: Allegiance and Guideline E; Personal Conduct for concerns about his involvement with an organization that espoused racist, anti-Semitic, and homophobic views and advocated the use of force and violence against the U.S. government. The case summary did not name which group the applicant was a member of, but he freely admitted his involvement with the group and that was tied to a long history of racially motivated incidents and criminal conduct. At one point in 2012 he served as an officer on the board and his name was on documents filed in state court requesting “not for profit” status for the organization.

In 2014 the applicant claimed he resigned from the board and asked his name be removed from the rolls. This occurred a few months prior to him submitting security clearance application paperwork for his current employer. The applicant testified he informed his co-workers he used to be a “skinhead and white supremacist and they all get along”, but offered no corroboration or witnesses. Despite the preponderance of adverse information, the DOHA judge found the government did not prove the applicant advocated sedition against the U.S. or attempt to overthrow it and sided with the applicant on the allegiance issue. However, he did rule against the applicant under the personal conduct guidelines citing a long history of criminal activity and racist views. It was an interesting read for sure. You can find the whole case here.