An employee of a Space Force sushi supplier admitted to filming nude women using the bathroom at a missile base in California, according to court filings obtained by The Daily Beast.
Aung K. Zin, a contract employee at the Vandenberg Space Force Base commissary, was charged Nov. 10 with one federal count of video voyeurism. He pleaded guilty the same day; the case filings were unsealed on Nov. 14. Zin’s lawyer, Michael Thomas Gazell, did not respond to a request for comment on Monday.
Zin told investigators that he had been secretly taping the employee-only toilet since December 2020, the complaint against him states.
Vanderberg SFB, which opened in 1957 and is named after the late General Hoyt S. Vandenberg, second chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force, was rechristened as a Space Force installation in May of last year. It is located in Lompoc, which is in Santa Barbara County.
“Our nation’s Armed Forces have always been a vanguard of advancing American leadership beyond the bounds of Earth,” then-Vice-President Mike Pence said during a 2019 visit to Vandenberg, “and the Space Force…is the next and the natural evolution of American military supremacy. So, get ready for it.”
Vandenberg sits on some 100,000 acres of terrain ideally situated for rocket and missile launches, and plays host to Elon Musk’s SpaceX, which leases the two-pad Space Launch Complex 4 (SLC-4) for launches and landings. The first of SpaceX’s Starlink communications satellites was launched from Vandenberg in 2018, and SLC-4 most recently sent a SpaceX Falcon-9 rocket into orbit on Oct. 27.
The investigation into Zin, who worked for Advanced Fresh Concepts (AFC), a California company that “provided sushi services to the commissary” at Vandenberg, began in early 2022, the complaint against him states.
On Jan. 5, a video recorder was discovered hidden underneath the sink in the Vandenberg commissary’s employee restroom, according to the complaint.
Investigators then conducted a forensic review of the video camera’s memory card, and managed to recover a number of images from it that had been deleted, the filing continues. They “depicted 4 nude women using a toilet and 2 images of the subject,” it says.
In one of them, Zin could allegedly be seen wearing his work uniform emblazoned with the AFC logo and the first two letters of his nickname, Eric.
Zin was interviewed by investigators on April 22, according to the complaint. He “admitted to running and installing the video recording device, and had been doing so since Dec. 2020,” it states. He confessed to the charge of video voyeurism, a Class A misdemeanor, on Nov. 10 and was sentenced to three years supervised probation and $325 in fines.
An auto-generated email reply on Monday from Jeffery Seiler, the president and CEO of AFC, said he was out of the office until Tuesday. A voicemail left for Seiler’s assistant went unreturned, and an email to the company’s main address bounced back as undeliverable.