The husband-and-wife tandem who were accused of espionage that involves classified nuclear submarine information has appeared and court Tuesday and was ordered by the judge to remain detained.
Toebbes appear in court
The couple from Maryland – Jonathan and Diana Toebbe were taken into custody on Saturday and records noted that they’ve already appeared in a federal court in Martinsburg, West Virginia, People reported.
The two, aged 42 and 45 respectively, have been charged with conspiracy to communicate restricted data and communication of restricted data. At the time of writing, however, neither of them made a plea to the charges against them.
Selling submarine secrets
According to court documents, the prosecutors allege the husband – who is a nuclear engineer residing in Annapolis and has been working for the United States Navy – in relaying intel with his wife about the design of nuclear-powered warships to an individual whom they presumed was a foreign spy. Turns out, the so-called foreign spy is an undercover agent from the FBI.
That said, Magistrate Judge Robert Trumble on Tuesday has ordered Jonathan and Diana to remain behind bars since there is a hearing that is scheduled later this week.
Jonathan allegedly stated during the undercover operation that he’d be accepting $100,000 worth of cryptocurrency in exchange for the above-mentioned state secrets. In line with this, prosecutors claim that back in June, he said that he’s “ready to move forward” with the deal.
There was even a message sent by Jonathan to the undercover agent stating, “My friend, we have both taken considerable risks to reach this point and with good luck, we’ll soon have much to celebrate!”
Peanut butter sandwich
Federal agents have observed Jonathan drop off the classified information at a spot that they’d agreed upon in Jefferson County, West Virginia. There even was this one drop that included an SD card that had been stuffed inside a peanut butter sandwich and another one inside a Band-Aid wrapper.
The FBI also stated that Diana acted as a lookout during the operation as the agency claims that his wife is said to be standing approximately a meter away from him at the time.
If found guilty, Jonathan and Diana could be facing life in prison.