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Entrapment Question Spins FBI Spy Case

October 13, 1998|From Associated Press

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The FBI says Theresa Squillacote and Kurt Stand are "dedicated communists" who hate the U.S. government and betrayed it the first chance they got. Their attorneys say they are an emotionally battered couple who committed no crimes until the government trapped them.

Three days into one of the last spy trials of the Cold War, the evidence of wiretapped phone calls and pilfered Pentagon documents could point either way.

Squillacote, 40, and Stand, 43, are charged with conspiring to commit espionage, attempting espionage and illegally obtaining national defense documents.

Testimony has detailed the FBI sting that prompted Squillacote to copy classified documents and give them to a man she thought was a South African intelligence agent, actually an undercover FBI agent.

"Dedicated communists," U.S. Assistant Atty. Randy Bellows has repeatedly called the couple.

Defense attorneys deny few of the facts, only their interpretation. Squillacote's lawyer, Lawrence Robbins, calls the FBI meeting a "textbook case" of entrapment.

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