Page 2 of 2   <      

Sources: Call by Russian spy Anna Chapman to dad in Moscow led U.S. to hasten arrests

Accused Russian spy Anna Chapman became an instant Web sensation following the release of photos posted on the Russian social-networking Web site "Odnoklassniki," or Classmates.

Her father, Vasily Kushchenko, served in Kenya and has a senior position in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, according the newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda. He also had KGB experience, U.S. intelligence sources said. He told her to take the fake passport to the New York police.

About 1 p.m. June 27, Chapman went to the 1st Precinct in Lower Manhattan, turned in the passport and told the police what had occurred. The police called the FBI. When FBI officials arrived a few hours later, they asked a few questions and then arrested her.

Semenov first appeared under surveillance June 5, when he sat in a restaurant and used a computer to send encrypted messages while a car with Russian diplomatic plates was parked in the restaurant's lot, according to court papers. The car, which remained in the lot for about 20 minutes, was said to have been driven by a Russian official who in 2004 was involved in a money transfer for other "illegals."

On June 26, Semenov agreed to an evening meeting with another FBI informant who posed as a Russian government official. The FBI informant successfully persuaded him to take $5,000 and hide it the next morning at an Arlington County park. The FBI had installed video cameras covering the drop site, and at 11:06 a.m. the camera recorded Semenov delivering the money, hidden in an envelope in a newspaper. He was arrested shortly after.

More from PostPolitics:

Notable Cold War spy swaps over the years.

The American lives of the Russian spies.

Did the Russian spies fool the FBI?

<       2

© 2010 The Washington Post Company