Stewart David Nozette is a former NASA scientist arrested for attempting to communitcate, deliver and transmit sensitive information, and receiving cash for information from persons he believed to be members of Israel's Mossad. Watch for updates here as available and see two very interesting videos below.
Dr. Nozette, 52, was arrested at his home in a Washington suburb, after an FBI sting, which claims the scientist demanded "cash and an Israeli passport" in exchange for classified information obtained during a period when he had a high level security clearance with NASA, the Pentagon and an energy agency where he collaborated on developing a radar system to find ice on the moon's south pole.
Stewart Nozette apparently worked "for more than a decade" as a consultant for an Israeli company and was paid by them for work that included" answering the company's questions." This job is reportedly listed in his indictment.
A member of the White House’s National Space Council under the first President Bush, he developed a radar experiment credited with finding water on the Moon and worked at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, the nerve centre of US nuclear weapons research, in 1990-99.According to the report, an FBI agent contacted Nozette in September 2009, posing as a spy for Mossad, the Israeli intelligence agency.
He also thrived as a private consultant. According to court documents, he earned $225,000 (£137,500) as a consultant for Israel Aerospace Industries, a company owned by the Israeli Government.
"I don't get recruited by Mossad every day. I knew this day would come," Nozette is heard saying on a wiretap, according to the court papers.The indictment does not claim that Nozette had actually been recruited by Israel, or spied for Israel, but the FBI supplied him with $11,000.00 in cash, in exchange for answers about the "U.S. satellite and military early warning systems, and its attack response system."
The same agent recorded that shortly before Nozette travelled abroad in January he told a colleague he would flee the US if charged with a crime. That would appear to explain his demand for an Israeli passport.
He was searched while leaving on a business trip to an unnamed country, when officials found two small external computer hard drives in his luggage. Searched again on his return, the hard drives were missing.Dr. Stewart Nozette is described as an "astrophysicist with a top-level nuclear security," a well as an "acclaimed government scientist." Read a NASA bio on Nozette here. The first video below shows Dr. Nozette in happier times, as he answered questions from students about water on the moon and the second is a comprehensive report on the arrest. What a waste of talent.
According to court papers, he was caught putting an encrypted hard-drive into a post office box.