Antonin DeHays, French historian pleads guilty

| January 13, 2018

WTOP reports that Antonin DeHays, the French historian who looted the National Archives, pleaded guilty in US District Court last week;

From December 2012 through about June 2017, DeHays, a French historian with a particular interest in World War II, stole 291 U.S. service members’ dog tags and at least 134 other records from the National Archives location in College Park, Maryland, according to the plea agreement.

While DeHays kept some of the stolen U.S. dog tags and records for himself and gave others as gifts, he sold the majority of the stolen items on eBay and other marketplaces. Before selling the dog tags, he sometimes removed markings that identified them as belonging to the National Archives, according to information from the U.S. attorney’s office in Maryland.

In one instance from December 2016, court records say DeHays stole two dog tags from the National Archives at College Park — both of which belonged to a Tuskegee Airman who died when his fighter plane was downed in Germany on Sept. 22, 1944. He gave one of those dog tags to a military aviation museum in exchange for the opportunity to sit inside a Spitfire airplane, a World War II fighter aircraft.

He stole ID cards, letters, a Bible, even pieces of downed aircraft. He’s looking at ten years in federal prison. A whole new way to steal valor.

Category: Crime

Comments (44)

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  1. jonp says:

    No words for this POS. A few for the Military Aviation Museum that did the deal. Didn’t they know what they were looking at and have a few questions as to how that guy got the dog tag?

  2. AW1 Tim says:

    Give him a shovel and let him dig a pit. Shoot the fucker and toss him in. No marker, no nothing.

    This guy deserves much much more than 10 years. He was stealing OUR history.

    • Lex says:

      He’s not getting 120 months.

      10 years is, I’m assuming, the statutory maximum. That is not what he’s facing. His actual sentence will be determined by what range his criminal history (probably zero) and offense level put him at (adjusted for any variances/departures).

      Knowing nothing about this case, but having enough analogies to work with, 2 years is a good ballpark guess — and if he’s eligible for good time credit (which is likely) he’ll serve 85% of that — assuming he’s cooperated. Five years would shock me.

  3. Deplorable B Woodman says:

    I wonder how Frenchie flavored deli will taste to the patrons of the BTJT All You Can Eat Cockmeat and Tube Steak Prison Deli? Does Frenchie Nut Butter or Frenchie Manmeat Mayo have a different taste than American style?
    I’ll bet Bubba,Thor, Julio, and Tiny will be getting big packs of smokes for farming Frenchie out and around the prison to the other inmates.

    • 1610desig says:

      He’ll soon be playing “hide the baguette” with the cell block boys…I wonder if he’ll get all sexy for them by sporting a blue and white horizontally striped collarless shirt, a beret, goatee and cigarette holder while going “ha ha!” …like some throwback 1950s Parisian socialist

    • desert says:

      I think probably thats “right up his alley” lol

  4. Ex-PH2 says:

    Five minutes is all I ask. Five minutes, and if I can’t wipe that smug smirk off his face, no one can.

    Despicable is too kind a word for what he did and what he is.

    • Deplorable B Woodman says:

      Bring your extra largest cast iron skillet or frying pan in one hand, and your cat under your other arm.
      Or would that be cruelty to the cat?

      • Ex-PH2 says:

        Cast iron skillet, plus lid.

        No, I think Punkin Squawkypants would enjoy ripping this trollope’s face to shreds.

        • Wilted Willy says:

          I would love to have my big boy Purvis claw this frog’s throat out, but he would have to lick his ass for a month to get the taste out of his mouth. I could not be that cruel to my favorite kitty! I do have a nice 10 pound sledge that would do wonders on froggie boys skull!!!

    • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

      Let me offer to donate a pair of needle nose pliers, some barbed wire and an ice pick to your equipment arsenal, maybe some hot cooking oil as well?

  5. HT3 '83-'87 says:

    Pffft! The French! Not a damn one of them has been worth two-shits since The Marquis de Lafayette.

    • just some feller says:

      That’s what I thought until I read Hell in a Very Small Place (Dien Bien Phu)


      • Jeff LPH 3, 63-66 says:

        That was the French Foreign Legion that took the brunt of the fighting at Dien Bien Phu. I don’t think that the French Army was involved over there but I could be wrong.

        • Frank says:

          They were ex-Waffen SS
          The Foreign Legion did not recruit Frog eaters.
          Interestingly the French Foreign Legion still sings Waffen SS songs- albeit with the words changed.

  6. chooee lee says:

    Run his ass through a wood chipper and dump him on the compost pile.

  7. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    “In order to collect the sources, I travelled to the US for the first time of my life, in 2011. I spent almost a month gathering documents at the National Archives (College Park – MD). But during this stay, I found much more than simple documents… As a matter of fact I also met a pretty American girl who was meant to be my wife. We got married in Normandy in the summer of 2012. This made me one of the luckiest men on earth. I embraced this new life moving to Maryland in order to spend my days besides my loving wife. Soon, I started working as an Independent researcher at the National Archives creating my company (WWII Archives).” Antonin DeHays

    Frog Boy omitted a few items in that very poorly written, first-person article, including that his new employment allowed him access to a cache of personal items once belonging to our Fallen and to POWs. The items he stole were obtained after Germany’s defeat. During the war, the Germans had taken the items from downed airmen, dead or made prisoner, and used the material to track which American units were doing what. Frog Boy sold some of these items on EBay. On EBay. On Ebay. Our history, created by our Fallen, sold on Ebay.

  8. HMC Ret says:

    Well, he made a trade to sit inside a Spitfire. I wonder what he’s willing to trade to sit inside a prison cell? Oh, yeah, ten years of his life. Difficult to place a monetary value on what he stole, although it’s done all the time. But this goes beyond monetary value. He stole a nation’s history, a families history. Shame, Frenchie. Sounds that, being a ‘historian’ of some importance, he was granted special access and he took advantage of that.

  9. AW1Ed says:

    Reminds me of an old security poster, “Before betrayal, there is trust” or words to that effect. As for you shallow grave or compost heap fans, remember, the Chesapeake is full of hungry crabs.

  10. The Other Whitey says:

    Le douché.

  11. Thunderstixx says:

    Here’s hoping he doesn’t get an Air Force JAG that thinks he didn’t do anything wrong, like fracturing the skull of an 18 month old stepson…
    Or, deserting his country in combat and being the reason that men were dying or being severely wounded looking for him…

  12. Mason says:

    That there’s a market for war dead dog tags is more than a little revolting.

  13. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    Maybe we’ll hear about him getting his neck broken by some lifer he pissed off, I like to think positive! May he burst into flames and self immolate the next time he takes a shit.

  14. Just An Old Dog says:

    There was a case of an American Author and researcher Thomas P Lowery sneaking a pen into the National Archives and charging the date on a pardon that Lincoln signed to April 14, 1865, the day he was assassinated.
    He was thought to have did it so he could claim his research “discovered” such an interesting document, and booster his reputation as a writer and researcher.
    He confessed, them recanted and the statute of limitations passed so he was never prosecuted.
    He was banned for life from the archives and his reputation went to shit though.

  15. Bill M says:

    I just have no words for the disgust I’m feeling right now. Ten years is not enough. Draw and quarter, then hang from a lamp post for aging and feeding the vermin.

  16. OWB says:

    And what have they done to the bureaucrats who allowed him to walk out with all the items he stole?

    If the rules allow “historians” and others unfettered access to our precious documents and other historically significant items, then the rules need to be changed. Didn’t we go through this not so long ago with Sandy Berger?

    • Mason says:

      “And what have they done to the bureaucrats who allowed him to walk out with all the items he stole?”

      As soon as they accrue 20 years, they’ll be forcibly retired with full benefits. Our indignation will be noted on the retirement party cake.

    • OWB is a says:

      Oh for chrissakes, go suck a dick already. The National Archives has been, like many of the anonymous smaller federal agencies, starved for funds – they can’t watch every asshole every second. The NPRC alone, yes part of the National Archives, handles an average of 5,000 requests for military personnel request a day, like those requests posted on here debunking stolen valor punks, so across the various facilities they are strapped, especially with guys like this who actively work to steal around in place safeguards. You can’t keep the records from the people, they are the ones that own them. Give them a break, just like you probably missed something on your night watch as an E-nothing when you were pulling your pud, except in this case something important was actually being protected.


    Why do I suddenly have a craving for Freedom Fries?