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Army 1990 - 1999

1998 - DAVID SHELDON BOONE, a former Army signals analyst for the National Security Agency, was arrested 10 October and charged with selling Top Secret documents to agents of the Soviet Union from 1988 to 1991, including a 600-page manual describing US reconnaissance programs and a listing of nuclear targets in Russia. Boone was arrested at a suburban Virginia hotel after being lured from his home in Germany to the United States in a FBI sting operation.

Boone had worked for the NSA for three years before being reassigned to Augsburg, Germany, in 1988, and retired from the Army in 1991. In October 1988, the same month that he separated from his wife and children, Boone walked into the Soviet Embassy in Washington and offered his services. According to a FBI counterintelligence agent’s affidavit, Boone was under "severe financial and personal difficulties" when he began spying. His former wife had garnished his Army sergeant’s pay, leaving him with only $250 a month. According to the federal complaint, Boone met with his handler about four times a year from late 1988 until June 1990, when his access to classified information was suspended because of "his lack of personal and professional responsibility." He held a Top Secret clearance from 1971 and gained access to SCI information in 1976.

Boone is alleged to have received payments totaling more than $60,000 from the KGB. Boone was indicted on three counts: one for conspiracy to commit espionage and the other two related to his alleged passing of two Top Secret documents to his Soviet handler. On 18 December, Boon pleaded guilty to conspiracy, and on 26 February 1999 he was sentenced to 24 years and four months in prison. Under a plea agreement Boone was also required to forfeit $52,000 and a hand-held scanner he used to copy documents.

Washington Post, 6 November 1998, "Ex-NSA Indicted for Spying"
Washington Post, 9 November 1998, "Trial Set for Ex-NSA Analyst"
Washington Post, 27 February, 1999, "Ex-NSA Worker Gets 24 Years for Spying"


1997 – KELLY THERESE WARREN, a former US Army clerk was arrested 10 Jun 1997 and named in a three-count indictment alleging her involvement in the passing of sensitive information to Hungary and Czechoslovakia in the mid-80’s, as a part of the CLYDE LEE CONRAD spy ring. Warren was charged with conspiracy to aid a foreign government and gathering or delivering classified national defense information. From 1986 to 1988 she had been assigned as an administrative assistant in the section that handled war plans for the Army’s 8th Infantry Division headquarters in Bad Kreuznach, Germany.

In 1987 she was recruited into the Conrad ring by then co-worker RODERICK JAMES RAMSAY. Among documents Warren gave to Conrad to pass to Hungarian and Czech agents were secret US and NATO plans for the defense of Western Europe in the event of a Soviet bloc attack. The indictment said that Warren met with Conrad on base, at a bowling alley and in a church in Bad Kreuznach, to trade cash for secrets.

She earned only $7,000 for her efforts with which she claimed to have paid off debts. Federal agents had suspected her involvement for almost 10 years. According to a plea agreement, Warren pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit espionage on 6 Nov 1998 and on 12 Feb she was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Warren is the seventh US service member to be charged with taking part in the Conrad spy ring since 1988.

Raleigh News and Observer, 29 July 1997, "Federal agents still tracking members of '80s Army spy ring"
Florida Times-Union, 11 June 1997, "Former soldier arrested; Warner Robins woman charged in espionage case"


1996 – ROBERT STEPHAN LIPKA, former National Security Agency staff member, was taken into custody on February 23 at his home in Millersville, Pennsylvania, and charged with committing espionage while workings as a communications clerk from 1964 to 1967. While an Army enlisted man from age 19 to 22, Lipka worked in the NSA central communications room and reportedly provided the KGB with a constant stream of highly classified reports. He is believed to have caused extensive damage to US intelligence collection activities.

According to James Bamford of the Los Angeles Times, since Lipka provided Top Secret information to the KGB during the war in Vietnam, he may have been responsible for the loss of American lives. He is said to have used dead drops along the C&O Canal near the Potomac River and was paid between $500 and $1000 per delivery. Lipka left the NSA in 1967 and stopped meeting with his KGB handlers in 1974. He became a suspect in 1993 as a result of information believed to have been provided to the FBI by his ex-wife. His role in espionage was confirmed by FBI agents posing as Russian contacts.

According to an FBI spokesman, while the government was aware of a major security breach in the 1960s, it had not been able to identify Lipka as a suspect until it had received the additional information. It is believed that Lipka is the young soldier described in the autobiography of former KGB major general Kalugin who tells of a walk-in in the mid-1960s who was interested in money. According to Kalugin, the documents which the soldier passed included Top Secret NSA reports to the White House and copies of communications on US troop movements around the world.

The price reportedly paid by the Soviets during the period of his betrayal was $27,000. On 23 May 1997, Robert Lipka pleaded guilty to one count of espionage in exchange for a jail term of no more than 18 years. On 24 September, he was sentenced to serve a term of 18 years in Federal prison.

Washington Post, 24 Feb 1996, "FBI Arrests Ex-Soldier As Mysterious KGB Spy In Supersecret NSA"
Los Angeles Times, 3 Mar 1996, "Has A 30-year Mystery Unraveled?"
Wall Street Journal, 21 Nov 1996, "How the FBI Broke Spy Case That Baffled Agency For 30 Years"
Baltimore Sun, 24 May 1997, "Ex-clerk at NSA Is Guilty Of Spying; Former Soldier Sold Secret
Documents To Soviets In Mid-1960s"


1996 - PHILLIP TYLER SELDON, a former Pentagon civilian employee, pleaded guilty on 7 August in Alexandria, Virginia, to passing classified documents to a Salvadoran air force officer while on active military duty in El Salvador as a US Army captain. After leaving the Army, Seldon took a civilian job with the Department of Defense. According to court documents, Seldon gave the Salvadoran three packets of documents between November 1992 and July 1993. None of the material was reported to have exceeded the Secret level. Seldon claimed that he had met the Salvadoran officer while working as an intelligence advisor, and he believed that the officer had the appropriate clearance. This information came to light in the course of a polygraph examination as Seldon was applying for a position with the CIA. On 8 November, Seldon was sentenced by a US District court to two years in prison.

Washington Post, 9 Nov 1996, "Ex-Pentagon Worker Given 2 Years For Passing Secrets"


1993 - STEVEN J. LALAS, a former State Department communications officer stationed with the embassy in Athens, was arrested in Northern Virginia on 3 May and charged with passing sensitive military information to Greek officials. Although Lalas originally claimed that he had been recruited by a Greek military official in 1991 and feared for the welfare of relatives living in Greece were he not to cooperate, authorities later stated that he began spying for the Greek government in 1977 when he was with the US Army.

It is estimated that he passed 700 highly classified documents, including papers dealing with plans and readiness for US military strategy in the Balkans and a US assessment of Greece's intentions toward the former Yugoslavia. Athens was Lalas' fourth communications posting with the State Department. He had previously served in Belgrade, Istanbul, and in Taiwan. During his espionage career he earned a steady income stealing, then selling, DIA reports about troop strength, political analyses and military discussions contained in cables between the US Embassy in Athens and the White House, FBI communications about counter-terrorism efforts, and the names and job descriptions of CIA agents stationed overseas. Greek handlers allegedly paid him $20,000 to provide about 240 documents from 1991 to 1993.

The government first learned of the espionage activities in February 1993, when an official of the Greek Embassy here made a statement to a State Department officer indicating that he knew the contents of a Secret communication from the US Embassy in Athens to the State Department. Lalas was later identified (through a video monitoring system) stealing documents intended for destruction. In June 1993 Lalas pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit espionage and on 16 September was sentenced to 14 years in federal prison without possibility of parole. Prosecutors had recommended the 14-year sentence in return for Lalas' promise to reveal what documents he turned over and to whom. The full extent of his espionage activity was revealed prior to sentencing only after he failed two FBI polygraph examinations. Lalas is of Greek descent, but was born in the US

Washington Post, 4 May 1993, "Va. Arrest Made in a Spy Case From Greece"
New York Times, 4 May 1993, "Am. Employee at Embassy in Athens Arrested as Possible Spy"
New York Times, 6 May 1993, "US Embassy Employee Sold Secrets to Greeks, FBI Says"
Washington Post, 16 Sep 1993, "A 14-Year Sentence for Selling Secrets"


1993 - JEFFERY E. GREGORY a US Army Staff Sergeant was arrested 29 April 1993 at Fort Richardson, Alaska, resulting from a joint investigation between the FBI and the US Army Intelligence and Security Command. Gregory was one of several members of a spy ring operating out of the 8th Infantry Division, Bad Kreuznach, Germany, in the mid-1980s that sold US and NATO military secrets to Hungary and Czechoslovakia when those countries were in the Soviet Bloc. German authorities convicted the ring-leader, former US Army sergeant CLYDE LEE CONRAD, of high treason in 1990 and sentenced him to life in prison. In 1991, another ring member RODERICK JAMES RAMSAY, also a former Army sergeant stationed in Bad Kreuznach, was sentenced to 36 years in prison by an American court for his involvement in the network.

Clyde Conrad recruited Ramsay who is believed to have then recruited others, including Gregory. According to the federal complaint against Gregory, while assigned to the 8th Infantry Division in Germany from March 1984 to October 1986, "he helped procure extremely sensitive, classified documents relating to national defense, for transmittal to one or more foreign powers." At that time, Gregory was a staff driver at Bad Kreuznach, West Germany, and helped maintain the commanding general's mobile command center. He was also in charge of updating maps showing military maneuvers and had access to classified messages and correspondence. According to an FBI official, Gregory once took a military flight bag stuffed with 20 pounds of classified documents. The documents included "war plans" for the US and NATO.

On 28 March 1994, Gregory pleaded guilty to espionage charges. In June, 1994, Gregory, along with Sgt. JEFFREY STEPHEN RONDEAU, another member of the espionage ring, was sentenced by a military court to 18 years in prison.

New York Times, 2 May 1993, "Fourth Army Sergeant Held in Espionage Case"
Huntsville Times, 2 May 1993, "4th Army Sgt. Arrested in Alleged Espionage Ring in Germany"


1992 - JEFFREY STEPHEN RONDEAU, a US Army sergeant stationed at Bangor, Maine, was arrested in Tampa, Florida, on 22 October 1992, and charged with espionage for providing Army and NATO defense secrets, including tactical nuclear weapons plans, to intelligence agents of Hungary and Czechoslovakia from 1985 through 1988. Rondeau was allegedly part of the Conrad spy ring which operated out of the 8th Infantry Division, Bad Kreuznach, Germany, in the mid-1980s. A German court convicted former US Army sergeant CLYDE LEE CONRAD of high treason in 1990 and sentenced him to life in prison. The inquiry into Rondeau's involvement was aided by the cooperation of RODERICK JAMES RAMSAY. In 1991, Ramsey, also a former Army sergeant stationed in Germany, was sentenced to 36 years in prison by an American court for his involvement in the ring. As a recognition signal, Ramsay reportedly gave Rondeau a torn dollar bill to use when dealing with others in the plot.

The US Attorney for the Middle District of Florida said, "The espionage charge in this case is especially serious because it related to the allied defense of Central Europe including the use of tactical nuclear weapons and military communications." The three-count indictment of Rondeau charged that he conspired with Conrad, Ramsay, and others to "copy, steal, photograph, and videotape" documents and sell them to Hungary and Czechoslovakia. The indictment did not specify what amount of money he may have received. On 28 March 1994, Rondeau pleaded guilty to espionage. In June, 1994, Rondeau, along with Sgt. JEFFERY EUGENE GREGORY, another member of the espionage ring, was sentenced by a military court to 18 years in prison.

Houston Chronicle, 23 Oct 1992, "US Soldier Is Charged With Spying"
Atlanta Constitution, 23 Oct 1992, "Soldier Accused of Selling NATO Plans to Communists"


1991 - ALBERT T. SOMBOLAY, a specialist 4th class with the Army artillery, pleaded guilty in July 1991 to espionage and aiding the enemy. He was tried by military judge in Baumholder, Germany, and sentenced to confinement at hard labor for 34 years, reduction to E-1, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and dishonorable discharge.

Sombolay was born in Zaire, Africa. He became a US citizen in 1978 and entered the Army in 1985 as a cannon crewman. In December 1990, assigned to the 8th Infantry Division in Baumholder, Germany, he contacted the Iraqi and Jordanian embassies to volunteer his services in support of the "Arab cause." To the Jordanian Embassy in Brussels he passed information on US troop readiness and promised more information to include videotapes of US equipment and positions in Saudi Arabia. He told the Jordanians that he would be deployed to Saudi Arabia and could provide them useful information. To the Iraqi Embassy in Bonn, Germany, he offered the same services, but the embassy did not respond.

On 29 December, Sombolay's unit was deployed to Saudi Arabia, as part of Desert Shield, without him. Still in Germany, Sombolay continued to contact the Iraqis and provided a Jordanian representative several items of chemical warfare equipment (chemical suit, boots, gloves, and decontamination gear). His activity was discovered by US Army Military Intelligence. After Sombolay's arrest in March 1991, he admitted to providing DESERT SHIELD deployment information, military identification cards, and chemical protection equipment to Jordanian officials. His motivation was money.

Cincinnati Post, 7 Dec 1991, "Anatomy of a Spy"
Huntsville Times, 4 Dec 1991, "Army Spy Sentenced to 34 Years"


1990 - RODERICK JAMES RAMSAY, a former US Army sergeant, was arrested in Tampa, Florida, on 7 June and charged with conspiracy to commit espionage. Ramsay joined the Army in 1981 and was transferred to West Germany in June 1983 where he was recruited by then-Army Sgt. Clyde Lee Conrad. (Conrad was sentenced to life imprisonment in May 1990 for treason.)

Ramsay received $20,000 for selling military secrets that could have caused the collapse of NATO—Top Secret plans for the defense of Central Europe, location and use of NATO tactical nuclear weapons, and the ability of NATO's military communications—that were passed to Hungary and Czechoslovakia. An FBI official said, "It's one of the most serious breaches ever—it's unprecedented what went over to the other side. The ability to defend ourselves is neutralized because they have all our plans." Ramsay initially used a 35-millimeter camera to photograph classified documents, but then switched to more effective videotape. He reportedly recorded a total of about 45 hours of videotape.

Ramsay is said to have a high IQ, is multilingual, and has the "ability to recall minute details, facts and figures from hundreds of volumes of documents." The FBI described him as "brilliant, but erratic." In West Germany he worked as a clerk-typist in the 8th Infantry Division. When arrested he was unemployed, living sometimes at his mother's house and sometimes in his car.

In September 1991 he pleaded guilty and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors. On 28 August 1992 he was sentenced to 36 years in prison. The sentence reflects his cooperation with investigators. According to the FBI, this case was the most extensive espionage investigation in the history of the FBI and considered to be the largest US espionage conspiracy case in modern history.

Los Angeles Times, 9 Jun 1990, "Alleged Spy Called Brilliant, Erratic"
Washington Times
, 29 Aug 1992 "Spying Sergeant Gets 36 Years"
Security Awareness Bulletin
1-97, "Profile of A Spy"




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