Submarine Spy Scandal

Few facts, much speculation at the moment. That should not keep us from figuring this out.

A couple of US citizens from Annapolis decided to pass secret submarine stuff to an unnamed country. The unnamed country alerted the American FBI who led the couple along, posing as intelligence people. They are a husband and wife. The husband was in the US Navy and is a contractor. The level of betrayal is breathtaking.

They will certainly have the book thrown at them, and that seems about right. It is worthy of note that they seem to have been upset that Donald Trump was president and decided to hurt America to something, something, something.

I wonder what the unnamed country was. I bet it was Australia. They are interested in new subs. They would help the FBI. The couple looked into emigrating to Australia.

Let us learn from this sad example. Do not use the handler’s dead drops. They are being watched. Leave your stuff in a dead drop, then tell the handler where it is. Also, if your handler claims to be a Brazilian (or whatever) quiz him to make sure he really is.

What are your thoughts?

This stuff just pisses me off. Aldrich Ames, the Marines in Moscow… damned traitors!

Torture them for info and then make them slaves until they die.

I too wonder what the unnamed country was. I strongly doubt it’s Australia. China seems more likely. The couple may have wanted to get as far away as possible, without learning a new language.

They claim to be broke. If true, they are real fuckups. Maybe too much speculation in crypto currency?

Correction: you may be right that the couple tried to sell to Australia. If so, they are real morons. Australia is a very close ally of the U.S., and would no way in hell be interested. Even more so after the recent change in the deal with France.

The unnamed country turned them in. That makes me doubt China.
France? They were immensely angry about losing the Australian contract for submarines, but they are NATO. Did this come after the Australian thing?

Hostile countries turn down such offers when they don’t have enough bang for the buck. It can serve as public relations. “See how honest we are?” :angel:

Good question, which I don’t know the answer to, about when this occurred w.r.t the rework.

I would believe that given their building in the South China Sea that the Chinese would be very damn interested in US submarine info. I read that he offered manuals on reactors.
An American sub recently ran into something underwater in the SCS.

I don’t understand why Donald Trump being President was the impetus for all of this, they did know eventually someone else would take office right? What if they sold Submarine secrets and suddenly Obama took office again? Then they’d have egg on their face!

Torture is not reliable, let alone ethical or moral. Slavery also is immoral.

Don’t forgret Robert Hanssen, who is serving 15 life sentences without parole but his wife stil gets his pension.

This is a very weird case indeed. It would be strange for it to be for money, given that a nuclear engineer presumably earns a lot. If he and his wife hated Trump, then, as pointed out, they had four whole years of Trump in which they could have gotten “even” with Trump by doing this, rather than waiting for Biden. The only nation that would seemingly want this tech would be China, but it wasn’t China. Strange strange.

Dope here


I think it is unlikely to be Australia. From the affadavit,

In the letter, the sender stated a desire to sell documents containing U.S. Navy
information marked CONFIDENTIAL that included printouts, digital media files containing
technical details, operations manuals, and performance reports. The letter requested the
transmission of the enclosed technical data to COUNTRY 1’s military intelligence agency. The
sender wrote: “I apologize for this poor translation into your language. Please forward this letter
to your military intelligence agency. I believe this information will be ofgreat value to your nation.
This is not a hoax.”



Later on the same date, June 26, 2021, the FBI recovered a blue 16GB SanDisk SD
Card left by [ … ] at the dead drop location. The SD card was wrapped in
plastic and placed between two slices of bread on a half of a peanut butter sandwich. The half
sandwich was housed inside of a plastic bag.


The accused took safeguards against this. They required that the embassy of the country they were working with display a special signal for the entire memorial day weekend. The FBI could not have gained their trust without cooperation from the country.

But yes, choosing your own dead drop location would have been smarter, and they tried to set it up that way - the FBI obviously refused to accept such an arrangement.


But you would think it would discourage future potential traitors from approaching your country with what might be more valuable information.

If you’re upset with the current President or some other government policy, you are justified in resigning your government position or even leaving the country and seeking citizenship elsewhere. But you’re not justified in holding on to your position and acting as an agent for another country.

Nice, Max.

This leads us to —

42 U.S. Code § 2274. Communication of Restricted Data

Whoever, lawfully or unlawfully, having possession of, access to, control over, or being entrusted with any document, writing, sketch, photograph, plan, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information involving or incorporating Restricted Data—
(a) communicates, transmits, or discloses the same to any individual or person, or attempts or conspires to do any of the foregoing, with intent to injure the United States or with intent to secure an advantage to any foreign nation, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by imprisonment for life, or by imprisonment for any term of years or a fine of not more than $100,000 or both;

I agree that it is a breathtaking betrayal of trust.
But I’m wondering how serious the damage would have been.

There are many levels of secrecy,
I have no idea what they are called, of course.
So let’s name them Secret, Top-secret, Super-top-secret, Super-super-top secret, etc. :slight_smile:
I’m guessing that “Confidential” is probably one of the lower levels of secrecy.

If so, it’s a good thing that the FBI caught these people before they did really serious damage.

Also, this quote sounds weird–like a letter from a Nigerian prince scammer
“I apologize for this poor translation into your language. Please forward this letter
to your military intelligence agency"

“your language”? "your militiary intelligence agency??? Huh??—doesn’t a guy who wants to be a spy at least learn the name of the organization he wants to spy for and which language they speak? :slight_smile:

A strange story.indeed.

CONFIDENTIAL is the lowest classification level, below SECRET.

What a couple of treasonous dumbasses. I highly doubt any country would pay much for CONFIDENTIAL secrets. These are, by definition, the least damaging secrets we have, and most of them are probably available on the internet, in some form, if one is a savvy enough searcher.