Mexico native Bryan Minkyu Martin pleaded guilty Thursday morning to charges that he took money in exchange for military secrets.
Martin’s guilty plea came as his two-day Navy court martial was to begin in Norfolk, Virginia.
The Petty Officer 2nd Class now faces a sentence of up to life in prison.
Martin admitted that he sold documents and photos labeled either secret or top secret to a man for $11,000. Martin believed the man was an intelligence agent of the Chinese government. The man was actually an undercover FBI agent.
The Navy said at the time of his arrest that Martin had said he would be more valuable to the “agent” in time as he planned to land a job with one of the nation’s top security agencies.
He also faced 11 counts of mishandling classified documents. He pleaded not guilty to 4 of the 11 charges.