espionage

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FBI Warns Colleges About Chinese Students

US authorities worry about the wholesale theft of technology and trade secrets

(Newser) - As the US warned allies around the world that Chinese tech giant Huawei was a security threat, the FBI was making the same point quietly to a Midwestern university. In an email to the associate vice chancellor for research at the University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign, an agent wanted to know if... More »

Neighbor: 'I Can't Believe Ed Was a Chinese Spy!'

California tour operator charged with being an illegal foreign agent

(Newser) - A California tour operator charged by US officials with illegally ferrying information to China was a quiet and friendly man with a taste for luxury cars, a neighbor said. Xuehua Edward Peng, 56, of Hayward was charged in documents unsealed Monday with being an illegal foreign agent and delivering classified... More »

Report: CIA's Kremlin Asset Was Recruited Decades Ago

Sources say he rejected first extraction offer

(Newser) - A high-level CIA informant "exfiltrated" from Russia to the US in 2017 had been an American intelligence asset for decades, sources tell the New York Times —and he rejected an earlier attempt to get him out of the country. The sources say the informant—who was recruited long... More »

Former CIA Officer Admits Spying for China

Jerry Chun Shing Lee was paid to provide info on covert agents

(Newser) - A former CIA agent suspected of being the mole who helped bring down the network's operations in China early this decade has pleaded guilty to spying for Beijing. Prosecutors say that after Jerry Chun Shing Lee, 54, left the US to live in Hong Kong in 2007, China paid... More »

Putin: 'It's an Outrage'

Russian leader speaks out against Maria Butina's prison sentence

(Newser) - One person isn't too thrilled with a Russian operative's prison sentence : Vladimir Putin. "It's an outrage," he said Saturday of Maria Butina's 18-month sentence, per the Guardian . "It's not clear what she was convicted of or what crime she committed. I think... More »

Mar-a-Lago Crasher Had Devices in Room: Prosecutors

Judge was asked to keep Chinese woman in custody

(Newser) - A signal detector, nine USB drives, and five SIM cards for mobile phones—that's what prosecutors say authorities found in the hotel room of the woman who was arrested on the grounds of President Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort last month. Yujing Zhang was in court in Florida for a... More »

FBI Opens Mar-a-Lago Probe

The arrest of a Chinese woman set things in motion

(Newser) - Federal officials are looking into whether a Chinese woman arrested at President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago club with a device containing computer malware was part of a larger effort to gain access to the president and do potential harm. That's according to a US official who spoke to the... More »

Arrest of Chinese Woman Raises Security Fears at Mar-a-Lago

Secret Service says she was carrying malware

(Newser) - Serious questions are being asked about security at President Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort after the arrest of a Chinese woman who was carrying a thumb drive with "malicious malware." According to court documents, Yujing Zhang told security officials Saturday she was a member who wanted to use the... More »

Rosenberg Accomplice Dead at 101

Morton Sobell admitted to stealing military secrets for Soviets

(Newser) - "When you write my obituary, please don't say that I was accused of treason," Morton Sobell told the New York Times in 1998. Wish granted. The third figure in the famous 1951 spying case of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg—found guilty of conspiracy against the US, a... More »

Lawyer: Paul Whelan Thought He Was Getting Vacation Pics

But the American's lawyer says he thought he was getting vacation photos

(Newser) - In early January, Russian authorities claimed the American arrested in Moscow over an alleged "espionage operation" received a flash drive containing a list of employees of a secret Russian agency. Now Paul Whelan's attorney says he did indeed receive a drive that held "state secrets," but... More »

Poland: We Caught Huawei Manager Spying for China

Chinese man, former Polish security officer charged with espionage

(Newser) - Poland's Internal Security Agency has charged a Chinese manager at tech giant Huawei in Poland and one of its own former officers with espionage on behalf of China, state broadcaster TVP reported Friday. Both men were arrested Tuesday. Polish security agents searched their homes as well as the offices... More »

Russians Say 'US Spy' Was Caught Receiving a Flash Drive

Meanwhile, it emerges that Paul Whelan is also a British citizen

(Newser) - The American citizen arrested in Russia over an alleged "espionage operation" is a citizen of at least one other country. British authorities confirmed Thursday that Paul Whelan is a dual national and has requested assistance from British diplomats in Moscow. The 48-year-old former Marine was born in Canada, though... More »

Marines Release Details on American Held by Russians

US officials have been granted access to Paul Whelan

(Newser) - The Russian government said Wednesday it has allowed an American citizen held on espionage charges to have access to US officials seeking answers about his arrest. The AP reports US consular officials were granted access to Michigan resident and former Marine Paul Whelan for the first time since his arrest... More »

American Arrested in Russia 'Has a Superior Set of Skills'

But Paul Whelan's brother says he's definitely not a spy

(Newser) - The American who Russia claims is a spy was simply in the country to attend a wedding, according to his family. News of Paul Whelan's arrest in Moscow came on Monday. At the time, Russia's FSB said only that an American man had been detained Friday "during... More »

Russia Says It Arrested a 'US Spy' in Moscow

His name has been given as Paul Whelan

(Newser) - Russia's domestic security agency says it has arrested a US citizen on espionage charges. The Federal Security Service, or FSB, the top KGB successor agency, said that the American man was detained in Moscow on Friday. The agency in Monday's statement didn't elaborate beyond saying he was... More »

My Daughter Got 5 Years. And Trump's Boys Get What?

Reality Winner's mother has something to say

(Newser) - "I am writing now because I am outraged: While my daughter languishes in prison, those actually responsible for threatening our election continue to get off easy." So writes Billie Winner-Davis in an Intercept article about her daughter, Reality Winner. A 27-year-old US Air Force veteran, Winner got five... More »

Maria Butina Will Plead Guilty to Conspiracy Charge

Alleged Russian spy reaches deal with feds

(Newser) - An alleged spy accused of trying to infiltrate American organizations including the NRA might be on her way back to Russia soon. Maria Butina, a Russian gun rights activist who was arrested in July and is currently being held in solitary confinement at a federal facility in Alexandria, Va., has... More »

Reality Winner Makes Plea, Mother 'Disagrees Strongly'

But Winner 'will accept the consequences,' mom says

(Newser) - More than a year after her arrest, Reality Leigh Winner is pleading guilty. The former NSA contractor—who allegedly supplied the media with secret intel on Russians hacking US voting systems—planned to enter her plea agreement Friday in federal court, Engadget reports. "I do know that she has... More »

Ex-CIA Officer Is Facing Up to Life in Prison

Kevin Mallory, 61, convicted of sharing secrets with China

(Newser) - A former CIA officer was convicted Friday on charges he spied for China by providing top secret information in exchange for $25,000, the AP reports. Kevin Mallory, 61, of Leesburg, Virginia, faces up to life in prison, although federal sentences are often less than the maximum. A sentencing hearing... More »

Alleged US Double Agent Could Get Life in Prison

He's accused of accepting $800K to spy for China

(Newser) - A former Defense Intelligence Agency case officer who allegedly sought out a new career as a double agent working for Beijing didn't catch his flight from Seattle to China on Saturday. Ron Rockwell Hansen, 58, was arrested by the FBI as he attempted to leave the country, reports Reuters... More »

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