Australian Faces More Spy Charges A former Australian intelligence officer was indicted yesterday by a federal grand jury in Alexandria on a charge of espionage and a second count of attempted espionage for allegedly selling U.S. secrets to a foreign country.
Jean-Philippe Wispelaere was indicted in May on a charge of attempted espionage and criminal forfeiture after allegedly trying to deliver classified U.S. documents on May 12 to undercover FBI agents posing as representatives of a foreign government.
In the indictments handed up yesterday in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Wispelaere is charged with delivering secret information relating to the national defense of the United States to an agent of an unnamed government on Jan. 18 in Bangkok. The new count of attempted espionage stems from allegations that he later tried to deliver classified documents to undercover FBI agents in Bangkok on April 3.
Each of the espionage charges carries a maximum penalty of life in prison. If convicted, Wispelaere also could be ordered to return the $120,000 he allegedly made while selling classified U.S. military secrets to undercover agents.
Wispelaere, 28, was employed by the Australian Defense Intelligence Organization in Canberra, Australia, from July 1998 to January 1999. He had access to top-secret information.
Officials allege that Wispelaere was getting ready to complete a deal to sell additional secret documents to undercover FBI agents when he was arrested at Dulles International Airport in May during a sting operation.
Murder Suspect Guilty of Other ChargesOne of three men charged in the January 1996 slayings of three young women pleaded guilty this week to unrelated felonies in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt.
Willis Mark Haynes, 21, of Bowie, pleaded guilty Monday to distribution of crack cocaine, being a felon in possession of ammunition and being a felon in possession of a handgun. U.S. District Judge Peter J. Messitte scheduled sentencing for Sept. 29.
Haynes is charged with murder in the deaths of Tamika Black, 19; Tanji Jackson, 21; and Mishann Chinn, 23. The women were shot to death and their bodies were found on a remote stretch of Maryland Route 197 in January 1996.
Prosecutors allege that Haynes shot the women after one of them had a minor argument with another man charged in the slayings, Dustin John Higgs, 25, of Laurel. Haynes and Higgs were indicted in December on murder and kidnapping charges in connection with the triple slaying.
A third man, Victor Gloria, 24, of Laurel, pleaded guilty in December in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt to being an accessory after the fact to the slayings.
Maintenance Worker Charged With TheftA Gaithersburg man was indicted yesterday on charges that he stole jewelry from elderly North Bethesda residents while working as a condominium maintenance worker, Montgomery County prosecutors said.
Kurt Gooden, 28, was indicted on six counts of first-degree burglary, six counts of felony theft and one count of engaging in a theft scheme. Prosecutors said Gooden used keys from his job to enter residents' units at the Old Georgetown Village condominiums and steal jewelry, which he later pawned.
Montgomery police have tied Gooden to $93,700 worth of stolen jewelry taken during six burglaries this year and last year, prosecutors said. Gooden was fired from his condominium job in May, authorities said.
Man Allegedly Shoots Dog in HeadA 19-year-old District man was arrested yesterday after he allegedly shot a dog in the head. The man fired a handgun at the dog, a pit bull and German shepherd mixed breed, as it was being walked by its owner in Fort Slocum Park in Northwest Washington, officials said.
D.C. police arrested Melvin High, 19, of the 200 block of Gallatin Street NW, in the shooting, U.S. Park Police Lt. Anthony Datcher said.
The dog was put to sleep after the shooting. High was charged with a weapons offense, Datcher said.