To Russia With Plea

Prosecutors detail spy swap deal in letter to federal judge

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To Russia With Plea

JULY 8--Ten suspected Russian secret agents today pleaded guilty to federal charges as part of a prisoner exchange that is described in a letter filed this afternoon in U.S. District Court in Manhattan.

The letter to Judge Kimba Wood, a copy of which you'll find here, notes that the "key provision" of a deal struck by the U.S. government and the Russian Federation involves the release of "four individuals...who are incarcerated in Russia for alleged contact with Western intelligence agencies."

Three of the prisoners, prosecutors reported, were convicted of treason and sentenced to lengthy prison terms. As part of the exchange, Russian officials have "agreed to release the Russian Prisoners and their family members for resettlement." The Russian suspects, each of who pleaded guilty to a felony charge of conspiring to serve as unlawful foreign agents, have agreed never to return to the U.S. (they are expected to immediately depart the country).

Included in this group is Anna Chapman, the 28-year-old woman who emerged as the fetching face of the Russian ring. A copy of the plea deal signed by Chapman, pictured above, can be found here. (8 pages)