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The engineer and his wife were arrested on charges of selling submarine secrets

The engineer and his wife were arrested on charges of selling submarine secrets

Washington – A naval engineer and his wife have been arrested for allegedly leaking prohibited information about the design of US nuclear submarines to a foreign power representative. Department of Justice (DOJ, in English).

Jonathan Tobey, 42, and his wife, Diana, 45, were arrested Saturday in Jefferson County, West Virginia, by the FBI and the Navy Criminal Investigation Service. Atomic Energy Act, DOJ said in a statement.

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said in the report that there was a conspiracy to send information about the design of U.S. nuclear submarines to foreign countries.

The United States Atomic Energy Act defines “limited data” as “the design, production or use of nuclear weapons,” as it relates to the production of specialized nuclear products and the use of specialized nuclear materials in energy production.

Toby and his wife have been charged with conspiracy to commit possession of and withholding data.

According to the DOJ, Tobe, a naval nuclear engineer assigned to a naval nuclear propulsion program, had a national security permit that gave him access to “restricted data.”

In particular, the defendant served and gained access to information related to naval propulsion, in which the military components of key design, operating parameters, and performance characteristics of reactors for nuclear submarines stand out.

On April 1, 2020, Topi sent a package to the foreign government with a return address in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, instructing them to establish a “prohibited data” model and a confidential communication to make purchases. .

Since then, the engineer has maintained an encrypted email exchange with a person believed to represent a foreign government and became an FBI agent, leading to a deal to sell information in cryptocurrency for thousands of dollars.

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The undercover agent paid Toby $ 10,000 in cryptocurrency on June 8, and on the 26th of that month Jonathan and Diana Tobey went to West Virginia to hide a memory card in an installed location. Half a peanut butter sandwich.

The woman apparently acted as a “lookout,” the DOJ described.

After receiving the card, the agent paid another $ 20,000 to obtain the password via email to access the information.

Another card, this time hidden in a gum bag, on August 28 Topeb received $ 70,000 to reveal the keys.

This Saturday, the couple was arrested after placing another card in a hidden location in West Virginia. The two are scheduled to appear Tuesday in a court in the state of Martinsburg.

According to The Washington Post, the data are related to the Virginia nuclear attack submarines, which have been in service with the U.S. Navy since 2004 and are designed to replace the previous Seawolf class.