On 18 December 1996, Edwin Earl Pitts, 43, a 13-year veteran of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, was charged at a court hearing in Alexandria, Virginia, with attempted espionage, conspiracy to commit espionage, and lesser counts. Pitts allegedly sold secrets to the Soviet Union and Russia from 1987 to 1992 in exchange for more than $224,000. Pitts pleaded guilty to espionage charges on 30 April 1997. On 23 June 1997, he was sentenced to 27 years in prison.
Materials arranged chronologically.
Reid, Alice. "Espionage Suspect Denies Charges." Washington Post, 31 Dec. 1996, A10.
Pincus, Walter. "In Espionage Case of Suspect FBI Agent, Questions of Motivation." Washington Post, 2 Jan. 1997, A6.
Hall, Charles W., and Walter Pincus. "Spy Suspects Refusing to Go Quietly." Washington Post, 23 Jan. 1997, A9.
Robert C. Kim, Harold Nicholson, Earl Edwin Pitts cases.
Hall, Charles W. "Spy Suspect Admits Guilt; Second to Do So." Washington Post, 1 Mar. 1997, A1, A15. "Dear KGB: The Film Is in the Milk Carton." Washington Post National Weekly Edition, 10 Mar. 1997, 35.
Pitts pleaded guilty to two counts of espionage on 28 February 1997. According to a court document, the evidence against Pitts included a computer disk with a February 1990 letter to the KGB on it. The letter was devastating to any plans to offer an entrapment defense. See also, Bill Gertz, "FBI Agent Pleads Guilty to Spying," Washington Times, 1 Mar. 1997, A1, A4; and Neil A. Lewis, "Ex-F.B.I. Supervisor Pleads Guilty to Espionage," New York Times, 1 Mar. 1997, A9.
Masters, Brooke A. "Ex-FBI Agent Gets 27 Years for Passing Secrets to Moscow." Washington Post, 24 Jun. 1997, A2.
See also, Washington Times, "Ex-FBI Agent Gets 27 Years for Spying for Soviets, Russia," 24 Jun. 1997, A7.
Risen, James. "Jailed Agent Says He Voiced Suspicion about Spy Suspect." New York Times, 28 May 2001. [http://www.nytimes.com]
Interviewed at the federal prison in Ashland, KY, where he is serving a 27-year sentence for spying for Moscow, Earl Pitts said that he told FBI investigators in June 1997 "that he knew of suspicious activity by his fellow agent Robert P. Hanssen that indicated he might also be spying."
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