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Russian Gets 25 Yrs For Exposing Non-Spies

From the Agence France-Presse:

Chief Justice Alexander Ababkov, holding paper, announces the sentence of Col. Alexander Poteyev, who was convicted in absentia, to the military court.

Russia convicts colonel of exposing US spy ring

by Dmitry Zaks Mon Jun 27, 2011

MOSCOW (AFP) – A Moscow military court on Monday handed down a 25-year sentence to a top Russian foreign intelligence agent who was convicted in absentia of exposing a "sleeper cell" network in the United States.

Colonel Alexander Poteyev received a 20-year sentence for high treason and another five years for desertion, a spokeswoman for the Moscow District Military Court told AFP.

Poteyev is unlikely to spend time in a Russian jail because he is thought to be hiding in the United States after leaving behind his wife and dramatically fleeing Moscow by night train.

"Poteyev’s actions delivered a considerable blow to Russia’s national security," the Interfax news agency quoted the presiding judge as telling the closed-door hearing.

Security analysts said the cell’s detection last summer inflicted severe damage to Russia’s foreign intelligence efforts and revealed weaknesses in a surveillance programme that had been Moscow’s pride since Soviet times.

Never mind that we were repeatedly assured by the Obama administration that this Russian spy ring was completely innocuous. In fact, we were told that they weren’t even spies, they were merely "unlawful agents." Which is why they were all allowed to go home — to a heroes’ welcome — without even being questioned.

By the way, lest we forget, the Russian news media (as well as our own media) downplayed this scandal when it first came out. They claimed it had all been "trumped up by elements inside the US bent on discrediting Obama’s policy of reconciliation with Russia." Meaning, the Republicans.

The 10 sleeper agents’ main job was to blend in with young US professionals and get hired at top state agencies and private firms that dealt with advanced technologies and other sensitive data.

The group included the subsequent tabloid sensation Anna Chapman and were welcomed home personally as heroes by former spy and current Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

Russia’s de facto leader later used a national television appearance to call the double agent a "pig" who will "regret it a thousand times over"

Again, Mr. Putin must have been kidding. Since we have been reassured that these Russians were completely harmless.

New details about Poteyev read out in the sentence showed a decade of cooperation with the United States in which the colonel betrayed compatriots working in Latin America and Canada as well as the United States…

The two-month hearing reportedly included testimony from Poteyev’s wife — who is still based in Moscow — and Russian intelligence officers…

But a wife can’t be compelled to testify against her husband. (Just kidding, of course.)

The incident left some [Russian] intelligence officials conceding that their US surveillance programme had been set back by up to a decade.

"Intelligence work is built on trust, psychology and reputation, which makes this a terrific blow," former military intelligence agent Viktor Suvorov told Moscow Echo radio.

"Very few people will trust us after this," the ex-agent said

Because their spying is not as effective as it might be? Of course whoever trusts the Russians deserves everything they get.

But the real problem here is we can’t even trust our current administration to look out for America’s national security.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, June 29th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

2 Responses to “Russian Gets 25 Yrs For Exposing Non-Spies”

  1. Rusty Shackleford says:

    1) It’s very likely that Obama will turn him over because:
    2)“New details about Poteyev read out in the sentence showed a decade of cooperation with the United States”

    Which makes it all Bush’s fault.

    • Right of the People says:

      Everything that goes bad while Spike is in office will be Bush’s fault.

      Just sayin’

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