House Leaders Demand Investigation of Claims NASA Leaked U.S. Space Defense Secrets, Justice Department Quashed Prosecutions

Congressmen Lamar Smith and Frank Wolf want investigations by the FBI and the Department of Justice Inspector General into charges of improper political interference with prosecution of foreign nationals who allegedly stole U.S. space defense secrets and passed them to China.

“We have been told by sources close to this investigation that the FBI’s case is substantially complete and was referred to the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California for prosecution, but it has been stalled for more than a year and that an assistant U.S. attorney was reassigned from the case,” Smith and Wolf said in Feb. 8, 2013, letters to FBI Director Robert S. Mueller and DOJ IG Michael Horowitz.

“We are deeply concerned that political pressure may be a factor,” the two congressmen said.

Smith, a Texas Republican, is chairman of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology Committee, while Wolf, a Virginia Republican, heads the panel’s appropriations subcommittee with oversight of the National Aerospace and Space Administration.

The FBI’s targets were foreign nationals working at NASA’s Ames Research Center near San Francisco. The center’s director is retired Air Force Gen. Simon “Pete” Worden.

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