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article imageAll 10 alleged spies for Russia plead guilty

By Jason Smith     Jul 8, 2010 in Crime
Ten alleged spies told a federal judge in New York on Thursday that they are pleading guilty, laying the groundwork for what could be the biggest Russia-U.S. spy swap since the Cold War.
MSNBC reports that the pleas took place hours before the defendants were to be returned to Russia. Two administration sources had informed the Associated Press that the Russian government would release four people in exchange.
MSNBC states that the alleged spies each announced their pleas to conspiracy to act as an unregistered agent of a foreign country. Vicky Pelaez, one of the defendants, said the Russians offered her free housing, a monthly stipend for life and visas for her two children. Pelaez, who is also a columnist for El Diario La Prensa, a New York Spanish-language newspaper, also asked to go back to her native Peru.
Russian arms control analyst Igor Sutyagin was serving a 14-year sentence for spying for the United States. He told his family that he was going to be one of 11 convicted spies in Russia who would be released in the exchange with the 11 people being held in the United States. It was said that he was going to be sent to Vienna and then to London, adds MSNBC.
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