Cuban Espionage Activities Against the U.S.
Thursday, 31 July 2003, 12:40 pm
Press Release: US State Department
Cuban Espionage Activities Against the United States
State Dept. highlights several recent incidents
The U.S. Department of State issued a fact sheet on July 30, eexamining Cuba’s history of espionage against the United States and
outlining several examples of recent anti-U.S. spying by Cuban agents. These incidents are simply the latest evidence that the regime of Cuban
dictator Fidel Castro "has long targeted the United States for intensive espionage activities," the State Department said.
Following is the text of the fact sheet, with further details:
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs
July 30, 2003
The Castro regime has long targeted the United States for intensive espionage activities. Castro himself told CNN in an interview in 1998:
"Yes, we have sometimes dispatched Cuban citizens to the United States to infiltrate counter-revolutionary organizations, to inform us
about activities that are of great interest to us. I think we have a right to do this."
— Ana Montes, a Defense Intelligence Agency analyst, confessed to spying for Cuba for 16 years (from 1985 to the time of her arrest on
September 21, 2001). Among other highly damaging actions, she gave the Cuban Government the names of four U.S. covert intelligence
officers working in Cuba and gathered writings, documents, and materials for unlawful delivery to the Government of Cuba.
— Seven Cuban spies, the so-called Wasp Network, were convicted of or confessed to espionage or related crimes in June and September
2001. The group sought to infiltrate U.S. Southern Command headquarters. One was convicted for delivering a message to the
Cuban Government that contributed to the death of four fliers from Brothers to the Rescue who were shot down in 1996 by Cuban MiGs
in international airspace.
— An INS official, provided information in 2000 in a sting operation, thereafter passed the information to a business associate with ties to
Cuban intelligence. As a corollary to this case, two Cuban diplomats were expelled from the United States for espionage activities.
— Over a 15-year period from 1983 to 1998, 15 members of the Cuban mission to the United Nations were expelled for espionage
activities, including three who were handlers for the Wasp Network in 1998.
— Cuban spies have also found considerable success penetrating U.S.-based exile groups. A notable example is that of Juan Pablo
Roque, a former MiG-23 pilot who defected to the United States in 1992, became a paid source for the FBI, and joined the ranks of the
Brothers to the Rescue (BTTR). He re-defected back to Cuba just days after the early 1996 BTTR shoot down, denouncing the exile
group on Cuban television and accusing it of planning terrorist attacks against Cuba and Castro.
— A similar example involves the case of Jose Rafael Fernandez Brenes, who jumped ship from a Cuban merchant vessel in 1988.
From 1988-1991, he helped establish and run the U.S. Government-financed TV Marti, whose signal was jammed from its
inception in March 1990, due in part to frequency and technical data provided by Fernandez Brenes.