A nuclear engineer and his wife were arrested in West Virginia, charged with espionage and selling illegal data.
The couple sold classified information about nuclear-powered warship projects to someone who is believed to have represented a foreign country for a year. However, this contact was an undercover US FBI agent who sent payments for data in cryptocurrency.
Jonathan and Diana Toby were arrested by the FBI and the Navy Criminal Investigation Service (NCIS) on Saturday. They will appear in federal court on Tuesday. According to Attorney General Merrick B. Garland’s statement:
“The complaint refers to a conspiracy to transfer information about the design of our nuclear submarines to another country.”
Jonathan Toby worked as a nuclear engineer in the Navy’s nuclear power plant program and received a valid national security clearance from the US Department of Defense.
In April 2020, the FBI interrogated Tubibi after it discovered that he had sent a package of sample data and instructions on how to create confidential communications and obtain additional information.
In June this year, an undercover agent sent Toebbe $ 10,000 in unidentified cryptocurrency as a “good faith” payment after receiving some computer samples. The couple used a dead end to hide an SD card containing additional information inside a peanut butter sandwich, which the agent paid an additional $ 20,000 in crypto for the decryption keys.
For the second time, the FBI paid Toby another $ 70,000 in cryptocurrency in exchange for additional data on U.S. nuclear submarines. The FBI arrested the couple after organizing the third landing.
About the topic: Blockchain can become part of the US strategic weapon.
This is not the first time that US federal agencies have used cryptocurrency in criminal investigations.
In August, the US State Department began offering cryptocurrency compensation through its Rewards for Justice website in exchange for information that could lead to the arrest of key terrorist suspects.