Skip to comments.Ex-Los Alamos Scientist, Wife Indicted in Alleged Atomic Weapon Conspiracy
Posted on 09/17/2010 12:45:21 PM PDT by DFG
A scientist and his wife who used to work at a high-level U.S. energy laboratory were arrested Friday after an FBI sting operation and indicted on charges of conspiring to help develop a nuclear weapon for Venezuela.
After their arrest, the two appeared in federal court in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
They dealt with an FBI undercover agent posing as a Venezuelan agent. The government did not allege that Venezuela or anyone working for it sought U.S. secrets.
(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...
He was laid off in 1988 and sued the lab for discrimination in 1994
Celebrate “diversity” again, folks. This is what happens when pandered to- peoples are victimized in their own biased eyes
I’m with you FRiend. I too am starting to wonder if there is a downside to your scenario.
None of the current crop make it out. None of the bureaucrats, etc.
God forgive me for the thought....
The thing is they still were American scientists, not German imports as were our rocket scientists after the war. Don’t nit pick, it is the sign of a loser.
Fermi, Bethe, Bohr, Teller...all naturalized.
Its a matter of timing. If we boot this bunch, patriots take the Congress, and Sarah is in the WH, then a bomb is a lot more troubling. Obama’s mistakes now can hit us later.
Robert Oppenheimer’s father was German immigrant.
There have been several foreign or foreign-born top scientists working on or making great contributions to the Manhattan Project - including Albert Einstein (indirectly, to an extent) Enrico Fremi, Emilio Segrè, Niels Bohr, (János) John von Neumann, (Jenó) Eugene Wigner, Edward Teller, Stanislaw Ulam, Josef Rotblat, Leo Szilárd, Hans Albrecht Bethe, just to name a few.
Of course, there was also Klaus Fuchs, but he was a Communist first, German-born Brit second.
The atomic bomb project in Germany, headed by brilliant German physicist Werner Heisenberg (of Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle fame), was not far along because Heisenberg “miscalculated” the amount of uranium needed to make the bomb by orders of magnitude - thus setting their reactor effort back several years, and to the U.S. nuclear program benefit when more than two tons of the German uranium stockpile was taken to Britain and then moved to the U.S.
...arrested Friday after an FBI sting operation and indicted on charges of conspiring to help develop a nuclear weapon for Venezuela.They had planned to sell the guy a box with used pinball machine parts, then make their getaway in a time machine built into a DeLorean. At least, that will be their defense at the trial.
anyone from the U.N get in free
“I’m trying to find a downside, here. I’d miss the Smithsonian... “
I would miss the Redskins, without them there would be no one left in the NFL for me to hate. GO COWBOYS!!!
Dear Hugo Chavez, here’s the straight truth: If you want to make a nukie, you need some plutonium or highly enriched uranium. You can’t have any. Any questions?
September 17, 2010
NOTE The following text is a quote:
Former Workers at Los Alamos Charged with Transmitting Classified Nuclear Weapons Data to Injure the United States
WASHINGTONThe Justice Department today announced that a scientist and his wife, who both previously worked as contractors at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in New Mexico, have been indicted on charges of communicating classified nuclear weapons data to a person they believed to be a Venezuelan government official and conspiring to participate in the development of an atomic weapon for Venezuela, among other violations.
The 22-count indictment, which was returned yesterday by a federal grand jury in the District of New Mexico, was announced by David Kris, Assistant Attorney General for National Security; Kenneth J. Gonzales, U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico and Carol K.O. Lee, Special Agent in Charge of the FBIs Albuquerque Division.
The defendants are Pedro Leonardo Mascheroni (Mascheroni), 75, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Argentina, and Marjorie Roxby Mascheroni (Roxby Mascheroni), 67, a U.S. citizen. Both were arrested by FBI agents this morning and made their initial appearance in federal court in Albuquerque today. If convicted of all the charges in the indictment, the defendants face a potential sentence of life in prison.
The indictment does not allege that the government of Venezuela or anyone acting on its behalf sought or was passed any classified information, nor does it charge any Venezuelan government officials or anyone acting on their behalf with wrongdoing. Further, the indictment does not charge any individuals currently working at LANL with wrongdoing.
Mascheroni, a Ph.D. physicist, worked as a scientist at LANL from 1979 to 1988 and held a security clearance that allowed him access to certain classified information, including Restricted Data. His wife worked at LANL between 1981 and 2010, where her duties included technical writing and editing. She also held a security clearance at LANL that allowed her access to certain classified information, including Restricted Data. As defined under the Atomic Energy Act, Restricted Data is classified information concerning the design, manufacture or use of atomic weapons; the production of special nuclear material; or the use of special nuclear material in the production of energy.
The indictment charges the defendants with conspiring to communicate and communicating Restricted Data to an individual with the intent to injure the United States and secure an advantage to a foreign nation. They are also charged with conspiring to and attempting to participate in the development of an atomic weapon, as well as conspiring to convey and conveying classified Restricted Data. The indictment further charges Mascheroni with concealing and retaining U.S. records with the intent to convert them to his own use and gain, as well as six counts of making false statements. Roxby Mascheroni is also charged with seven counts of making false statements.
The conduct alleged in this indictment is serious and should serve as a warning to anyone who would consider compromising our nations nuclear secrets for profit, said Assistant Attorney General Kris. I applaud the many agents, analysts and prosecutors who worked tirelessly to bring about this prosecution.
U.S. Attorney Gonzales said, Our laws are designed to prevent Restricted Data from falling into the wrong hands because of the potential harm to our national security. Employees at the Los Alamos National Laboratory who have access to Restricted Data are charged with safeguarding that sensitive information, even after they leave the lab. This is absolutely necessary for our national security, and it is what the public expects. Consistent with its responsibility to protect our national interests, LANL has cooperated fully in the investigation leading to the indictment of Dr. Mascheroni and Marjorie Roxby Mascheroni.
As is often the case with these types of investigations, this has been a long, painstaking, and methodical process. I am exceedingly proud of the work done by our Special Agents and their close colleagues at the New Mexico U.S. Attorneys Office. I am also grateful for the assistance of and close collaboration with officials at the Department of Energy and Los Alamos National Laboratory, said FBI Special Agent in Charge Lee.
According to the indictment, Mascheroni had a series of conversations in March 2008 with an undercover FBI agent posing as a Venezuelan government official. During these conversations, Mascheroni discussed his program for developing nuclear weapons for Venezuela. Among other things, Mascheroni allegedly said he could help Venezuela develop a nuclear bomb within 10 years and that, under his program, Venezuela would use a secret, underground nuclear reactor to produce and enrich plutonium, and an open, above-ground reactor to produce nuclear energy.
During these talks, Mascheroni allegedly asked about obtaining Venezuelan citizenship and described how he expected to be paid for his classified nuclear work for Venezuela. He also told the undercover agent he should be addressed as Luke, and that he would set up an email account solely to communicate with the undercover agent. Mascheroni later used this account to communicate with the agent and to arrange for deliveries of materials at a dead drop location, which was a post office box.
In July 2008, the undercover agent provided Mascheroni with a list of 12 questions purportedly from Venezuelan military and scientific personnel. In response, Mascheroni delivered to the dead drop location in November 2008 a disk with a coded 132-page document on it that allegedly contained Restricted Data related to nuclear weapons. Written by Mascheroni and edited by his wife, the document was entitled A Deterrence Program for Venezuela and laid out Mascheronis nuclear weapons development program for Venezuela. Mascheroni stated that the information he was providing was worth millions of dollars, and his fee for producing the document was $793,000, the indictment alleges.
In June 2009, Mascheroni received from the dead drop location another list of questions, purportedly from Venezuelan officials, and $20,000 in cash from the undercover agent as a first payment. On his way to pick up these materials, he allegedly told his wife he was doing this work for the money and was not an American anymore.
In July 2009, Mascheroni delivered to the dead drop location a disk that contained a 39-page document with answers to the questions. According to the indictment, the document was written by Mascheroni, edited by his wife, and contained Restricted Data related to nuclear weapons. In the document, Mascheroni allegedly reiterated that the information he had provided was classified and was based on his knowledge of U.S. nuclear tests that he had learned while working at LANL, but that he would state the document was based on open information found on the Internet if our relationship/alliance does not work
In August 2009, the indictment alleges, Mascheroni and his wife met with the undercover agent at a hotel, where Mascheroni further discussed his nuclear weapons development program for Venezuela. Several months later, FBI agents questioned Mascheroni and his wife about the classified information Mascheroni had provided to the undercover agent, among other things. Both made a series of false statements in response, the indictment alleges.
This investigation was conducted by the FBIs Albuquerque Division with assistance from the Department of Energy and LANL.
The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Fred Federici and Dean Tuckman of the U.S. Attorneys Office for the District of New Mexico, and Trial Attorneys Kathleen Kedian and David Recker of the Counterespionage Section of the Justice Departments National Security Division.
The public is reminded that an indictment contains allegations only and that every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
Someone or some entity would seize power. The US as we know it (with all of its faults) would be GONE.
Sorry, but those who picked nits with you are in the right.
A very large percentage of the most critical scientists in the Manhattan Project were refugees from the Nazis. They were from a variety of European countries. Many were Jews and/or (unfortunately, as it turned out) socialists or Communists.
They were especially dominant in the theoretical physics side. Prior to the war America just didn't have much in the way of theoretical physicists, with those we did have largely imported.
Most of these scientists became naturalized citizens eventually, but it is really inaccurate to say we used "all American scientists" to build The Bomb.
BTW, British and Canadian scientists played a significant role too.
It’ll never happen. Our enemies realize DC is the best chance they have of seeing the destruction of our nation.
Our own people???
You know better.....Nationality has nothing to do with it. Lots of homegrown terrorists and spies and traitors....far more than foreign born.
One will do. One rope and one pulley. Let them stand on their tiptoes. One will tire first, hang, slump then hang the other.