Espionage in the Defense Industry	

During a social gathering held in 1970 at a commercial establishment in the New York City vicinity, one Sergey Viktorovich Petrov (fictitious name), a Russian citizen, happened to strike up a casual conversation with an individual employed as an engineer with the Grumman Aerospace Corporation.

In the course of the ensuing verbal exchange, Petrov explained that he was Russian and was employed at the United Nations (UN) where he translated papers relating to various scientific affairs. He added that he lived in New York City with his wife and daughter, and that he was trained in aeronautical engineering. He also related that he had a five-year contract.

The engineer revealed his employment and noted that he was engaged in design planning relating to the F-14 fighter aircraft that was being developed by Grumman for the United States Navy. He explained that his company had been dismissing a large number of engineers, and therefore, his future employment prospects at Grumman were rather bleak. The American illustrated his points by commenting on certain economy measures he had undertaken in his personal spending habits due to his uncertain future.

Before the chance meeting was over, Petrov bought his new-found friend a drink. He told the engineer he would enjoy seeing him again in the near future at which time he could perhaps treat the American to a steak dinner. The engineer accepted Petrov's invitation at 7 p.m., one week later.

Petrov and the engineer met as planned the following week. At Petrov's suggestion, the engineer followed the Russian's car to a restaurant in Amityville, Long Island. During the two-hour-long dinner, they discussed a number of general topics. At one point, Petrov said he was seriously considering starting a business in the New York City area. He added that he would enjoy having the engineer as an employee should the latter lose his job at Grumman. Petrov went on, explaining that in the meantime he was preparing his doctoral thesis. In this regard he wished to obtain some engineering data about the F-14 aircraft. Petrov said he would pay the engineer for any information he could provide, but quickly added that he did not need any classified data. Petrov said he especially desired some information about the F-14's wing sweep mechanism since this concept greatly intrigued him. He remarked that in case the engineer was unable to provide him with details of the wing sweep mechanism, he would, nevertheless, appreciate any information whatsoever concerning the work performed at the Grumman plant.

Petrov then told the engineer that if he could provide anything of value, he would be paid approximately $300 per month. The engineer promised Petrov he would consider his request and would inform the Russian of his decision at an engineering conference which was to be held soon. The engineer added that Petrov would, no doubt, wish to attend this meeting since the subject matter would be of interest to him. To the engineer's surprise, however, the Russian replied that he did not think it would be wise for him to attend his forthcoming conference. He also cautioned the engineer to give no sign of recognition should their paths cross at any future scientific meeting.

Before concluding their meeting, Petrov obtained the engineer's home telephone number but declined to provide his own in return. They then agreed to meet again in front of their present location at 7 p.m. on a date about three weeks later. Petrov told the engineer that if for some reason he could not make it on that day, then they would meet on the following Monday at the same time and place.

At the conclusion of this second meeting, the engineer, suspicious of Petrov's intentions, reported his suspicions to the Grumman security office which immediately notified the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Special Agents of the FBI interviewed the engineer who agreed to cooperate by meeting again with Petrov in order to ascertain the Russian's intentions. The engineer explained that his remarks concerning his somewhat precarious financial situation seemed to impress Petrov. The Agents then instructed the engineer to continue to express a need for money at future meetings.

At their next meeting, Petrov asked the engineer to be alert for any reports or publications relating to the F-14. He added that he was also interested in any other material to which the engineer had daily access. In reply, the American inquired as to what he could expect in the way of monetary compensation. The Russian promised to pay him from $100 to $300, the exact amount depending solely on the material's value.

Petrov asked the engineer if he would have any problems in removing material from the plant. Petrov then commented that if the engineer could borrow the requested data overnight, he would return it the next day. Although Petrov previously had said he did not require any confidential material, at this point he mentioned that any confidential information the engineer could provide would be "worth more."

Future meetings between Petrov and the engineer continued on a almost monthly basis. They were invariably held at different restaurants on Long Island on Monday evenings at 7 p.m. FBI Agents, conducting a surveillance of the meetings, observed that most of them were held within close proximity of Long Island railroad stations. Future meetings between the American and the Russian were always arranged at the conclusion of each previous meeting. The date, time, and place of the next meeting were agreed upon together with an alternate meeting date in case either party was unable to attend on the original date.

1 | 2 |