An officer high up in the command of the nuclear arsenal of the United States has been fired after being accused of using $1,500 worth of counterfeit chips at a Council Bluffs, Iowa casino.
Vice Admiral Tim Giardina has been removed as 2nd in command of nuclear weapons at Offutt Air Force Base and demoted.
A Navy spokesman says Giardina was removed from his position at Offutt near Omaha and demoted to a two-star admiral.
For nearly two years Giardina has been the deputy commander of U.S. nuclear forces.
The gambling allegations surfaced in June at the Horseshoe Casino in Council Bluffs. Agents from the State of Iowa and the Navy are investigating the case.
Giardina is a highly decorated officer with more than three decades of service in the Navy. He had been deputy commander and chief of staff of the U.S. Pacific Fleet before his assignment at Offut Air Force Base. He was stripped of his security clearance in early September.
By O. Kay Henderson, Radio Iowa