Return to HOME DATES NAMES ORGANIZATIONS
1983 - WALDO H. DUBBERSTEIN, retired DIA employee and associate of convicted arms smuggler Edwin P. Wilson, was indicted on 28 April 1983 on charges of selling US military secrets to Libya. The following day Dubberstein was found dead; his death was later ruled a suicide. Had he been convicted of espionage and of other charges against him, including conspiracy and bribery, Dubberstein would have faced a possible sentence of 57 years and $80,000 in fines. Dubberstein had apparently begun his cooperation with Libya as an outgrowth of meetings with an old CIA friend, Edwin P. Wilson, who acted as a middleman for passage of information to Libya and receipt of payments to Dubberstein.
Washington Post 8 May 1983, “The Last Battle of an Old War Horse”
Time 9 May 1983, “Beyond Justice: An Accused Spy is Dead”
2005 - LAWRENCE ANTHONY FRANKLIN, an intelligence analyst in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, International Security Affairs, Iran desk, held a Top Secret clearance with access to sensitive compartmented information. The FBI filed criminal charges against Franklin 3 May 2005, accusing him of passing, from 2002 to 2004, classified military information about Iran and Iraq to two pro-Israel lobbyists, Steven Rosen and Keith Weissman, and to an Israeli diplomat. Rosen and Weissman were senior staff members of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), a pro-Israel lobbying organization. Their own prosecution in the same case was novel in that neither held security clearances that required them to protect U.S. classified information. Franklin pleaded guilty in October 2005 to three felony counts in exchange for his cooperation and the government’s willingness to drop three other charges. He was sentenced in January 2006 to 12 years and seven months in prison and a $10,000 fine. This relatively lenient sentence reflected the judge’s impression that Franklin had been driven by a desire to help, not damage, the US. Franklin was not to begin his sentence until after legal proceedings against Rosen and Weissman were completed, at which time his sentence might be reduced. Meanwhile, Franklin remained free on bail. On 1 May 2009 prosecutors announced that they were abandoning the charges against Rosen and Weissman and then, on 12 June 2009, Franklin’s sentence was reduced to probation, with 10 months of home confinement.
BBCnews.com 20 Jan 2006, “Pentagon Man Jailed Over Spying”
New York Times 1 Dec 2006, “Former Military Analyst Gets Prison Term for Passing Information”
Federation of American Scientists 23 Jun 2008, “Court Narrows Scope of Appeal in AIPAC Case”
Washington Post 1 May 2009, “Charges to be Dropped Against Two Former AIPAC Lobbyists”
Washington Post 12 Jun 2009, “Sentence Reduced in Pentagon Case”
1993 - FREDERICK CHRISTOPHER HAMILTON, a former Defense Intelligence Agency official, pleaded guilty on 5 February 1993 to the charge of passing to Ecuadorian officials classified US intelligence reports evaluating the military readiness of Peruvian security forces. At the time, Hamilton was a DIA research technician in the defense attaché’s office in Lima, Peru, a post which he held from 1989 to 1991. He apparently believed that the disclosures could help avert a possible conflict between the two countries. Peru and Ecuador have been disputing territory (sometimes violently) along their mutual border for the past 50 years. Hamilton holds advanced degrees in Spanish and Portuguese. At the time of his arrest, he was employed as a language instructor at a military academy in Virginia. His activities were uncovered by US intelligence agencies after they received information from a confidential source indicating secrets were being leaked. Hamilton, who held a Top Secret security clearance while with the DIA, met Ecuadorian representatives in their embassy in Lima on 13 February and 20 May of 1991. He passed extremely sensitive information that disclosed US intelligence operations and the identity of US sources in the region. “He didn't get any money,” said a US official. “He was a very naive individual who was flattered by the [Ecuadorians].” Hamilton's attorney stated that, “What he thought he was trying to do was prevent a war... The purpose of disclosing the documents that he did was to show the country that was concerned about being attacked that the other country had neither the intent nor the ability to attack.” Hamilton reportedly passed five Secret intelligence reports and orally disclosed the contents of four other classified reports. Under a court agreement, the former DIA employee pleaded guilty to two counts of unlawfully communicating classified information to a foreign country. The agreement specifies Hamilton may not appeal the sentence and the Justice Department will not prosecute him for espionage-related crimes. On 16 April, he was sentenced to 37 months in prison.
Washington Post 6 Feb 1993, “Va. Man Pleads Guilty to Leaking US Secrets”
Washington Times 6 Feb 1993, “Ex-DIA Official Pleads Guilty in Document Leak"
2008 - TAI SHEN KUO, 58, a naturalized US citizen born in Taiwan, imported furniture from China and had a store in New Orleans at the time of his arrest on 11 February 2008 for spying for the People’s Republic of China (PRC). A member of a prominent Taiwanese family, Kuo had immigrated to the US in 1972, attending college in Louisiana before building his own business in New Orleans, primarily involving furniture. He maintained an office in Beijing and took steps towards establishing two companies in the US to pursue contracts related to the US sale of defense technology to Taiwan. Masquerading as a Taiwanese agent when in fact he was working for the Beijing government, Kuo cultivated a relationship with GREGG WILLIAM BERGERSEN, a 51-year-old Pentagon weapons systems policy analyst in the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the agency that implements DoD’s foreign military sales program. From Bergersen Kuo obtained sensitive and classified national defense information regarding US military sales to Taiwan. The period of espionage was March 2007 until February 2008. An unidentified Chinese agent (referred to in the government’s affidavit as “PRC Official A”) gave Kuo instructions on what information and documents to collect. Kuo is believed to have received $50,000 from PRC Official A, who had lured Kuo into espionage with promises of helping him secure business deals in China. In turn, Kuo gave thousands of dollars in gambling money and trips to Las Vegas to Bergersen, who provided Kuo with the requested information. Bergersen passed classified documents to Kuo, believing that the information was to be given to Taiwan, an American ally, and also that Kuo would eventually give him a post-retirement job in Kuo’s future defense consulting firm. A third person in the ring was YU XIN KANG, 33, a Chinese national resident alien who had met Kuo in Beijing years earlier and by 2007 was an employee in Kuo’s New Orleans furniture company. Kang periodically acted as a go-between for Kuo and PRC Official A, carrying documents to Beijing where she had an apartment. Kuo was sentenced on 8 August 2008 to nearly 16 years in prison for being an unregistered agent of the PRC. Bergersen pleaded guilty in April 2008 and agreed to help federal authorities build their case against his co-conspirators; on 11 July 2008 he was given a 57-month sentence, plus three years’ supervised release. Kang was sentenced on 1 August 2008 to 18 months and three years of supervised release for aiding and abetting an unregistered agent of the PRC. In May 2009 another individual, a former Air Force Lieutenant Colonel, was charged with giving classified data to China via Kuo; he has pleaded not guilty.
Times-Picayune 1 Apr 2008, “Arms Analyst Admits Role in Spy Ring”
New York Times 10 Jul 2008, “Spy Cases Raise Concern on China’s Intentions”
Department of Justice Press Release 1 Aug 2008, “New Orleans Woman Sentenced to Prison for Aiding and Abetting Unregistered Agent of China”
New York Times 8 Aug 2008, “US Man Who Spied for China Gets Nearly 16 Years”
2004 - RONALD N. MONTAPERTO, a former DIA intelligence analyst, in late 2003 admitted to FBI and Navy counterintelligence agents that he had verbally provided Secret and Top Secret information to Chinese intelligence officers over several years (1989 to 2001). Back in 1982 Dr. Montaperto had been one of six DIA analysts selected to participate in a CIA-sponsored pilot program to foster social and professional interactions between DIA’s China experts and the Chinese military. After the program ended, Montaperto continued to maintain those close relationships as part of his official duties but did not always report these meetings to DIA, a violation of security rules. Montaperto began work for the DIA in 1981 as an intelligence analyst and went on in 1992 to become a research professor at the National Defense University. He later was dean of academics at the US Pacific Command’s Asia Pacific Center for Security Studies until early 2004 when he was dismissed. Montaperto was first investigated by the FBI in the late 1980s after a Chinese defector told US intelligence that Beijing had developed a handful of clandestine sources, “dear friends” to China. The FBI suspected Montaperto but later cleared him. Then in early 1991, when the FBI was again interviewing him, he admitted to having verbally provided contacts with information but could not recall the specifics. Nor was the FBI itself able to identify the precise nature of classified information that Montaperto had passed. The case was dropped for lack of evidence. In August 2001 the FBI and Navy, still in pursuit, initiated a “ruse” operation against Montaperto offering him work on a China-related project, but this would involve his taking a CI polygraph. It was during that polygraph that Montaperto made his admissions. In February 2004, FBI agents searched his home and found six 1980s-era classified documents. Montaperto pleaded guilty on 22 June 2006 to one count of unlawful retention of classified national defense information and—as a condition of the plea bargain—admitted to having provided Chinese military attachés considerable amounts of Secret and Top Secret information. Montaperto claimed that passing classified intelligence to China was unintentional and that he was only trying to gain intelligence that could be used in US policymaking. The plea bargain meant that Montaparto was not charged on more serious espionage counts. Instead he was sentenced on 8 September 2006 to three months in prison and three months’ home detention, with five years’ probation. Letters of support from current and former US senior intelligence and military officials persuaded the judge to grant the light sentence.
cicentre.com 6 Jul 2006, “Counterintelligence Case: Dr. Ronald N. Montaperto”
Washington Times 8 Sep 2006, “Leak Cost U.S. Spy Links to Chinese Arms Sales”
Washington Times 23 Feb 2007, “Inside the Ring”
2001 - ANA BELEN MONTES, a senior intelligence analyst at the Defense Intelligence Agency, transmitted sensitive and classified military and intelligence information to Cuba for at least 16 years before she was arrested on 21 September 2001. Surveillance on her activities was curtailed in response to the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 and concern that Cuba could pass on intelligence to other nations. Montes was 44, unmarried, and a US citizen of Puerto Rican descent. She was employed by the Justice Department when sometime before 1985 she began working with the Cuban Directorate of Intelligence. It has not been revealed whether she volunteered or was recruited by them. They encouraged her to seek a position with better access to information, and in 1985 she transferred to a job at DIA. From her office at Bolling AFB in Washington, DC, she focused on Latin American military intelligence. In 1992, she shifted from her initial work on Nicaragua and became the senior DIA analyst for Cuba. She passed at least one polygraph test while engaged in espionage. Montes met her Cuban handlers every three or four months either in the US or in Cuba to exchange encrypted disks of information or instructions. The Cubans also kept in contact through encrypted high-frequency radio bursts that she received on a short wave radio. She would enter the sequences of coded numbers coming from the radio into her laptop computer, and then apply a decryption disk to them to read the messages. She used pay phones on Washington street corners to send back encrypted number sequences to pager numbers answered by Cuban officials at the United Nations. By not following their strict instructions on how to remove all traces of the messages from her computer hard disk, Montes left behind evidence of her activities. Over her years of espionage, she gave the Cubans the names of four US military intelligence agents (they escaped harm), details on at least one special access program, defense contingency planning for Cuba, and aerial surveillance photos. She had access to Intelink and the information contributed to that network by 60 agencies and departments of the Federal government. Montes cooperated in debriefings by various intelligence agencies in a plea agreement to reduce her sentence. Her lawyers claimed she spied from sympathy toward Cuba and that she received no money for her espionage other than travel expenses and the cost of her laptop. She was sentenced on 16 October 2002 to 25 years in prison and five years’ probation. At the sentencing hearing she made a defiantly unrepentant statement condemning US policy towards Cuba. The judge responded that she had betrayed her family and her country and told her “If you cannot love your country, you should at least do it no harm.”
Miami Herald 21 Mar 2001, “To Catch a Spy”
Miami Herald 28 Mar 2001, “Cuban Spy Passed Polygraph at Least Once”
New York Times 30 Sep 2001, “Intelligence Analyst Charged with Spying for Cuba”
Miami Herald 16 Jun 2002, “She Led Two Lives—Dutiful Analyst, and Spy for Cuba”
New York Times 17 Oct 2002, “Ex-U.S. Aide Sentenced to 25 Years for Spying for Cuba”
1996 - PHILLIP TYLER SELDON, a former Pentagon civilian employee, pleaded guilty on 7 August 1996 in Alexandria, Virginia, to passing classified documents to a Salvadoran air force officer while on active military duty in El Salvador as a US Army captain. After leaving the Army, Seldon took a civilian job with the Department of Defense. According to court documents, Seldon gave the Salvadoran three packets of documents between November 1992 and July 1993. None of the material was reported to have exceeded the Secret level. Seldon claimed that he had met the Salvadoran officer while working as an intelligence advisor, and he believed that the officer had the appropriate clearance. This information came to light in the course of a polygraph examination as Seldon was applying for a position with the CIA. On 8 November, Seldon was sentenced by a US District court to two years in prison.
Washington Post 9 Nov 1996, “Ex-Pentagon Worker Given 2 Years for Passing Secrets”
1997 - KURT ALAN STAND, a regional labor union representative along with his wife, THERESE MARIE SQUILLACOTE, a former senior staff lawyer in the office of the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense, and friend JAMES MICHAEL CLARK, a private investigator, were arrested 4 Oct 1997 on charges of spying for East Germany and Russia. Stand reportedly began his spying activities in 1972 after being recruited by East Germany to cultivate other spies in the Washington, DC, area. He was introduced to East German intelligence officers (the Stasi) through his father, Maxmillian Stand, a chemical engineer who fled Nazi Germany in the 1930s. Clark, Squillacote, and Stand attended the University of Wisconsin in the 1970s where they were affiliated with leftist groups, specifically the Progressive Student Forum and the Young Workers Liberation League, the youth arm of the Communist Party USA. Stand recruited Clark in 1976 and Squillacote about the time the couple was married in 1980. Before obtaining a position at the Pentagon, Therese Squillacote was employed by the National Labor Relations Board and, later, the House Armed Services Committee. She sent numerous photographs to her German handlers. Squillacote reportedly told an undercover FBI agent that she turned to spying to support the progressive antiimperialist movement. She first came to the attention of the FBI in 1995 when she offered to be a spy in a letter to a South African government official who was a leader of his country's Communist Party. Stand and Squillacote frequently traveled to Mexico, Germany, and Canada during which time Stand would meet with their East German handlers. When the two Germanys united in 1990, Stand’s controllers tried to recruit him to spy for the Soviet Union and then for the Russian Federation. Although he never gained access to classified material, his role in the operation was to recruit agents and to provide information about the nongovernmental groups with which he worked. Stand allegedly received $24,650 for his recruiting and coordinating efforts. On 23 Oct 1998, he and Squillacote were convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage, attempted espionage, and illegally obtaining national defense documents. On 22 January 1999, a US District Judge sentenced Squillacote to 21 years and 10 months in prison and Stand to a sentence of 17 years and six months.
New York Times 7 Oct 1997, “Three Onetime Radicals Held in Spy Case”
Washington Post 2 Nov 1997, “Cloak and Blabber; A Story of Espionage and Very Loose Lips”
Washington Post 24 Oct 1998, “Jury Rejects Entrapment Defense, Convicts DC Couple of Spying”