Alleged Russian Spies Hid in Plain Sight: FBI

Secret agents lived as couples, had kids: feds
By M. Morris,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 28, 2010 7:00 PM CDT
The scene on Marquette Road in Montclair, NJ, on Monday, July 28, 2010, a day after alleged Russian spies "Richard Murphy" and "Cynthia Murphy" were arrested by the FBI at their house on the street.   (AP Photo/Rich Schultz)
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(Newser) – The charges against 11 people who were allegedly spying for the Russian government sound like something out of a James Bond novel—one that involves suburban couples living under deep cover as the Russian government funds their "education, bank accounts, car, house, etc.," reports the New York Times. A federal complaint released today alleges agents "who are placed together and co-habit in the country to which they are assigned will often have children together," which some apparently did.

Operatives communicated using invisible ink, steganography—concealing encoded information in images—and exchanging identical bags. They lived in and near Washington, New York, and Boston and used forged documents to "assume identities as citizens or legal residents of the countries to which they are deployed," the complaint alleges. And the plot thickens: The US was not the only target of the so-called Illegals Program.
(Read more Russia stories.)

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