1994-02-23 - Millions Said Paid to CIA Spy

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From: nobody@shell.portal.com
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
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UTC Datetime: 1994-02-23 09:53:07 UTC
Raw Date: Wed, 23 Feb 94 01:53:07 PST

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From: nobody@shell.portal.com
Date: Wed, 23 Feb 94 01:53:07 PST
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Subject: Millions Said Paid to CIA Spy
Message-ID: <199402230953.BAA03812@jobe.shell.portal.com>
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AP 02/23 00:31 EST
Millions Said Paid To CIA Spy
Copyright 1994. The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

   WASHINGTON (AP) -- The KGB develops a mole in the top ranks of the
CIA, state secrets are spilled, double agents are fingered, million-
dollar payoffs are made, and FBI agents skulk through a suspect's
household trash to find clues.
   And that's just the opening chapter in one of the biggest espionage
cases in CIA history.
   The Justice Department on Tuesday charged Aldrich Hazen Ames and
his wife, Rosario, with conspiracy to commit espionage. Ames, a 31-
year CIA veteran and former senior Soviet counterintelligence officer,
is accused of selling U.S. national security secrets to Moscow for
eight years starting in 1985. 
   A federal magistrate ordered the Ameses held without bail until a
hearing on Friday. If convicted on the conspiracy charge, they could
face life in prison. Neither of them spoke to reporters when they left
the magistrate's office. 
   President Clinton called the case a "very serious" breach of U.S.
national security. 
   Sources familiar with Ames' CIA career said he compromised more
than one Soviet double agent, including a KGB counterintelligence
investigations officer -- code named GTPROLOGUE -- who was feeding
information to the CIA. 
   Ames had access to vast amounts of classified information at the
CIA. And because during at least part of his long CIA career he
specialized in recruiting Soviet officials and intelligence officers
as spies, he would have been able to disclose to the Soviets the
identities of CIA agents inside the Soviet Union. 
   The Justice Department wrote in an affidavit released Tuesday that
Ames, 52, began spying for the Soviets in 1985 at a time when he was
the chief of the Soviet Counterintelligence Branch in the CIA's
Soviet-East European Division. He is accused of continuing his
espionage until his arrest on Monday. 
   Ames' wife, Rosario, 41, is a part-time student at Georgetown
University. The affidavit said she was a paid informant for the CIA
from about April-December 1983 while serving as a cultural attache in
Mexico City. Ames met her while working for the CIA in Mexico City
from 1981-83. They were married in 1985. They have a young son. 
   William Rhoads, who lives across the street from the Ames home in a
well-to-do section of suburban Arlington, Va., told reporters Tuesday
that they seemed an unexceptional couple who appeared to have income
beyond Ames' government job. 
   Indeed, the Ameses spent money at an extraordinary clip, yet they
apparently raised few if any suspicions by paying cash for the
$540,000 Arlington home in 1989 when he was transferred to Washington
from a CIA post in Rome. 
   His CIA job paid $69,000 a year. 
   Court documents said they also spent $99,000 on improvements to the
house through July 1993 and $7,000 on furniture in the first four
months they owned the house. 
   They also spent $25,000 toward the purchase of a Jaguar automobile
in January 1992, $19,500 on a new 1989 Honda, $165,000 on stocks and
securities from 1985-93, and put an average of more than $500 a month
on credit cards over that eight-year period. 
   The court documents also said that from 1986 through 1993, the
Ameses transferred by wire -- mostly from Credit Suisse bank accounts
in Switzerland -- more than $1 million to their Dominion Bank of
Virginia accounts. They deposited an additional $487,100 in cash in
various local accounts from 1985-93. 
   "This investigation has determined that none of this $1,538,685,
consisting of the wire and cash deposits, was derived from any salary
checks of the CIA payable to Aldrich Ames," the affidavit said. 
   The couple also own two condominium apartments and a farm in
Colombia, the records said, and large sums of money were sent to
Colombia by Ames to maintain those holdings. 
   The Colombia connection figures prominently in the Ames case.
Besides the fact that Rosario Ames was born in Colombia and was
working in the Colombian Embassy when she met Aldrich Ames, he also
apparently met Soviet contacts there at least once. 
   The affidavit said U.S. investigators believe Ames received a cash
payment from the Russian foreign intelligence service during a meeting
in Bogota in November 1993.