Tuesday, November 20, 2007

It Only Gets Worse

Kudos to Debbie Schlussel, Michelle Malkin and the New York Post, who are still digging into on the Nada Prouty scandal, while the MSM takes the a pass.

Readers will recall that Ms. Prouty is the former FBI Special Agent and CIA Operative who pleaded guilty last week to charges of fraudulently obtaining U.S. citizenship, unlawfully obtaining information from a government computer system, and defrauding the United States.

The charges stemmed from Prouty's use of a sham marriage to attain citizenship, a prerequisite for federal employment. Once on the FBI payroll, she attempted to gain information on the bureau's efforts to investigate Hizballah activities in the U.S. and abroad. Prouty's brother-in-law, who provided employment during the 1990s, is a reported Hizballah fund-raiser, accused of funneling more than $20 million to the terrorist group before fleeing the United States.

Now, it seems that Prouty has a former sister-in-law who pulled a similar scam, to enlist in the United States Marine Corps. Reporter Jeane MacIntosh of the Post has discovered that Samar Khalil Nabbou Spinelli married the brother of the man that Prouty wed to obtain U.S. citizenship. Both marriages took place in 1990; neither woman ever lived with their "husbands," and once the naturalization process was complete, they filed for divorce. Sources tell the Post that the Michigan men involved in the scheme, Christopher and Jean Paul Deladurantaye, agreed to the deal.

With her citizenship in hand, Samar Khalil Nabbou enlisted in the Marine Corps and eventually became a commissioned officer; her rank has not been disclosed. However, depending on when she earned her commission, Nabbou is at least a Captain (O-3), a Major (O-4). After entering the Corps--and divorcing her sham husband--Nabbou married a fellow Marine, giving her yet another last name.

So far, the Marine Corps has said little about Samar Khalil Nabbou Spinelli, reporting only that she is currently stationed in Japan. The Corps has not provided information on her military specialty or past duty assignments. However, with her background and language skills, it would not be surprising to learn that Spinelli is an intelligence officer.

This much we know: as a commissioned officer in the Marine Corps, Spinelli held a "Secret" security clearance at a minimum. If she held a Top Secret/SCI security clearance, Spinelli had access to Intelink, the secure "intranet" which allows the FBI, intelligence agencies and military intelligence to access and share information, including some of the nation's most sensitive secrets. As an FBI agent, Prouty may have had access to the same system, and she certainly used Intelink during her subsequent employment as a CIA operative.

What remains unclear is the relationship between Prouty and Spinelli once their sham marriages ended. The Post reports that both women lived together--with Prouty's sister--during their marriages to the Deladurantayes. However, Spinelli enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1990, while Prouty remained in the Detroit area until 1997, when she applied for a position with the FBI. Prouty used Spinelli as a reference on her employment application, suggesting there was some contact after her former "sister-in-law" began her military career.

At this point, the Marine Corps won't say what punishment (if any) Spinelli might face. For starters, there's the issue of Fraudulent Enlistment, which is a crime under Article 83 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). To become a Marine officer, Spinelli had to be a U.S. citizen, and she obtained her citizenship through fraud.

Spinelli was also named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the federal case against Prouty, along with the former CIA operative's sister, and her Hizballah-connected husband, Talil Kahil Chahine. We're guessing that Spintelli's status as a co-conspirator was based on more than merely providing a reference for Prouty's FBI application. Needless to say, the Marines will frown on Spinelli's role in the Prouty case, and her own, fraudulent enlistment into the Corps.

Beyond Spinelli's potential problems with the military justice system, there are other, equally pressing issues that require immediate resolution. The emergence of the Marine officer as an un-indicted co-conspirator raises new questions about her own access to classified information, contact with Nada Prouty after 1997, and how Spinelli's entrance into the Marine Corps (and subsequent commissioning) were vetted by authorities.


Complete background on the Prouty case from the experts at the Counter-Intelligence Centre.

1 comment:

Consul-At-Arms said...

I've quoted you and linked to you here: http://consul-at-arms.blogspot.com/2007/11/re-it-only-gets-worse.html