Monday, June 28, 2010

Feds Charge 10 with Spying for Russia

Via CNN -

Ten individuals have been arrested in the United States for spying for Russia, the Justice Department announced Monday.

The 10 were "trained Russian intelligence operatives," a Justice Department spokesman said.

All 10 suspects are charged with acting as agents of a foreign government, and nine are also charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Among the phony identities taken by the alleged spies are those of dead Americans, officials said.

All are scheduled to appear in court Monday in New York, Boston, Massachusetts, and Alexandria, Virginia.

A total of 11 defendants -- including the 10 arrested -- have been charged in two separate criminal complaints. One defendant is still at large, according to the Justice Department.

The defendants have been charged with conspiracy to act as an agent of a foreign government without notifying the U.S. attorney general, a crime that carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison, the Justice Department said. Conspiracy to commit money laundering has a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.

The case against the alleged spies, according to the statement, is the result of a "multiyear investigation" conducted by the FBI, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York and the Justice Department's National Security Division.

A Russian embassy spokesman said on Monday that he was unaware of the reports on the arrests, and said he is seeking more information from Russian officials.


More information here.


  1. But what is your take?
    Why send actual deep cover operatives (as the 10 alleged spies) when they can pull a China and achieve a great proportion of the same objectives using "cyber" means?

  2. Here is a good article from early 2009.

    Foreign Spies Are Serious. Are We?

  3. WP is a bit on the Republican side of things.
    CI is extremely important, if what the article states is true is a bit shocking (no central strategy?)

  4. Given the long-term investagation, it is hard to doubt. The FBI was all over them. Entered their houses numerous times to take photos of documents, followed several to South America, had audio recording of their houses...coding messages, etc.

  5. The criminal complaints...

    Note, they haven't been charged with espionage yet...only acting as covert foreign agents (plus some money laundering charges).

    The money laundering charges actually carry more jail time then the covert agent charges.