The SPECTRE of jammed satellites
At a Los Angeles coffee house in February, Justice, 49, was about to meet a stranger. He was nervous and had promised not to tell anyone else about his appointment with a Russian intelligence official.
Justice was fascinated with James Bond and Jason Bourne movies and the television program The Americans, the Showtime series about Russian spies living undetected in the United States. He had paid for the online courses “Spy Escape and Evasion” and “Fight Fast.” At the meeting, he introduced himself as “Brian.”
The official stroked Justice’s ego, telling him, “you’re very, very important to the Russians.”
To Justice, this made perfect sense.
Since 2000, he had worked as a third-shift production engineer at Boeing’s El Segundo, California, satellite factory building the U.S. Air Force’s GPS 2F, Wideband Global Satcom and Milstar spacecraft as well as NASA’s Tracking and Data Relay Satellites and NOAA’s GOES weather satellites.
“My hope for initiating this relationship is that we can both benefit,” Justice told his contact.“You can get something that will maybe help you; and I can get something that will help me,” he said.
“What I’m offering is basically everything on our servers.”
What Justice wanted in exchange was cash.
Within a couple of days after the meeting, Justice went back to work, inserted his badge into his work station, typed in his personal identification number, and began copying files from Boeing’s servers to thumb drives. Then, over the course of four meetings over several months, he delivered the flash drives in exchange for payments of $500 or $1,000 in cash.