On July 13, 2021, an Administrative Judge determined that the Individual's access authorization under 10 C.F.R. Part 710 should not be granted. The Individual is employed by a DOE contractor in a position that requires him to hold a DOE security clearance. The Local Security Office (LSO) received potentially derogatory information. Under Guideline B, the LSO alleged that the Individual indicated that his fiancée, a citizen of another country and the Individual's cohabitant since 2015, has been unlawfully residing in the United States since 2009, and further, the Individual has provided for her financially since June 2018. Under Guideline E, the LSO alleged that (1) in a April 29, 2020, LOI, the Individual admitted that his undocumented fiancée has been in the United States since 2009 and that she has resided with him since 2015; (2) the Individual admitted in his April 29, 2020, LOI that he used marijuana in May or June 2018, despite denying the use of illegal or controlled substances in the last seven years in his Questionnaire for National Security Positions (QNSP) and during the Enhanced Subject Interview (ESI); and (3) In his August 29, 2019, QNSP, the Individual certified that he was neither terminated from nor left his 2018 employment by mutual agreement. However, the investigation revealed that the Individual had been terminated following a failed drug test and a later false urine sample. Finally, under Guideline H, the LSO alleged that the Individual used marijuana in either May or June 2018, resulting in a failed random drug test administered by his employer.
At the hearing, the Individual and two other witnesses testified. Through testimony and the evidence submitted by DOE Counsel and the Individual, it was established that the Individual had not engaged in illicit drug use or prescription drug misuse since 2018, and further, the circumstances resulting in his illicit drug use were sufficiently unique to suggest that the Individual's illicit drug use was unlikely to recur. Further, the evidence also showed that it is unlikely the Individual would be susceptible to an attempt to blackmail him with his wife's immigration status, because not only was the Individual honest and forthright about her status, knowing this information would be examined by appropriate investigators, but further, the couple has retained an attorney to start the naturalization process. For these reasons, the Administrative Judge determined that it is unlikely the Individual would be placed in a situation of having to choose between the interests of the wife's home country and the United States, and that he could be expected to successfully resolve any possible conflicts of interest in favor of the United States. The Administrative Judge determined the Individual sufficiently resolved Guideline B and H concerns.
The evidence also established that the Individual had intentionally omitted information regarding his 2018 drug use and subsequent termination from the QNSP and ESI. Although the Individual had disclosed the previously omitted information upon his second meeting with the investigator, the Administrative Judge could not conclude that the Individual made prompt or good faith efforts to disclose the omitted information. Further, based on the information the Individual provided with regard to why he failed to disclose this information on his QNSP and ESI, the Administrative Judge could not find that the omissions took place under unique circumstances, were unlikely to recur, and were minor in nature. Accordingly, the Individual could not resolve the Guideline E security concerns. Based on the testimony of all witnesses and the evidence submitted, the Administrative Judge therefore concluded that the Individual's access authorization should not be granted. OHA Case No. PSH-21-0046 (Kimberly Jenkins-Chapman).