Russian-American Gets |10 Years for Espionage

     BROOKLYN (CN) — A Russian-American got 10 years in prison for posing as a Russian dignitary to funnel technology to his mother country’s military.
     Alexander Fishenko, 50, who lives in Houston, had pleaded guilty last September in Brooklyn Federal Court to the 19-count indictment filed against him by the feds.
     He got his 120 month sentence Thursday from U.S. District Judge Sterling Johnson in Brooklyn Federal Court.
     As part of the sentence, he also was ordered to forfeit more than $500,000 in criminal proceeds.
     Fishenko was accused last October of acting as an agent for the Russian government to export microelectronics to that country, money laundering and obstruction of justice.
     Ten others, along with two corporations, his own ARC Electronics Inc. and Apex Systems, for which he served as leader, also got roped in from the government’s filing in October 2012.
     Five others have already pleaded guilty in the blossoming scandal, and three were already convicted last October. Three more remain at large.
     ARC went belly-up, and the Russian-based procurement firm Apex never showed up in court.
     “U.S. export laws exist to check the proliferation overseas of dangerous military technologies, but Fishenko, while working illegally as an agent of the Russian government, flouted these laws in order to line his pockets,” said U.S. Attorney Robert L. Capers. ‘
     “Today’s sentence sends a powerful message of deterrence to others, who like Fishenko and his co-conspirators, would be willing to sacrifice the national security of the United States for their personal financial gain,” he said.
     Fishenko was accused of shipping millions of dollars of high-tech products to the Russian military after founding his company ARC in 1998. He then worked as a bigwig with Apex.
     From 2008 to 2012, he worked to take advantage of the links he had made in the tech industry to send microelectronics from manufacturers from the United States to the Russian military, “while evading the government licensing system set up to control such exports,” feds say.
     The devices are generally used for radar and surveillance systems, missile guidance systems and detonation triggers, the government said.In his effort to get his hands on them, Fishenko and his co-conspirators lied to retailers about why they were buying the products. They ultimately sent the devices to the Russian FSB internal security agency, a Russian war entity that builds air and missile defense systems and “produces electronic warfare systems for the Russian Military of Defense.”

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