Political interference in prosecution of theft of NASA defense secrets?
Congressmen Lamar Smith and Frank Wolf want investigations by the FBI and the Department of Justice Inspector General into charges of improper political interference with prosecution of foreign nationals who allegedly stole U.S. space defense secrets and passed them to China.This sounds like the plot from a spy thriller where some in the government are on the side of the bad guys. It may require sustained media nad Congressional attention to get to the bottom of this.
"We have been told by sources close to this investigation that the FBI's case is substantially complete and was referred to the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California for prosecution, but it has been stalled for more than a year and that an assistant U.S. attorney was reassigned from the case," Smith and Wolf said in Feb. 8, 2013, letters to FBI Director Robert S. Mueller and DOJ IG Michael Horowitz.
"We are deeply concerned that political pressure may be a factor," the two congressmen said.
The FBI's targets were foreign nationals working at NASA's Ames Research Center near San Francisco. The center's director is retired Air Force Gen. Simon "Pete" Worden.
"It is our understanding that this illegal technology transfer may have involved classified Defense Department weapons system technology to foreign countries, including China, potentially with the tacit or direct approval of the center's leadership," Smith and Wolf said in their letters.
Smith and Wolf also said they were told "that key evidence from the hard drive of one suspect's computer was corrupted, as were all the back-up copies in the government's possession."