(February 16, 1953- )
Born in Santa Monica, California
Had a top secret security clearance at the aerospace firm TRW
Sold classified information about communications ciphers and spy satellite technology to the Soviet Union
Convicted of espionage and sentenced to 40 years in prison (1977)
Released on parole (2002)
Portrayed by Timothy Hutton in the film 'The Falcon and the Snowman' (1985)
Why he might be annoying
He dropped out of three colleges.
He claimed he began spying in response to his discovery that the US was reneging on a deal to provide Australia with classified info about Soviet and Chinese activities in their sphere of influence due to American distrust of the socialist government of Prime Minister Gough Whitlam.
Although he never explained why, if that was his motive, he gave info to the Soviets instead of the Aussies.
When he was busted, he tried to claim that he had been blackmailed into spying by his courier, Andrew Daulton Lee.
He broke out of prison (January 21, 1980) and during a year and a half on the run robbed 17 banks in Idaho and Washington.
While a fugitive, he took aviation lessons with plans to fly to Alaska and then to the Soviet Union.
Why he might not be annoying
He was into falconry. (Hence the 'Falcon' nickname.)
He escaped from prison in part by copying techniques from the Clint Eastwood film 'Escape from Alcatraz,' which the prison showed the inmates as entertainment.
He was beaten in prison by members of the Aryan Brotherhood (1982).
He testified before Congress about lax security at defense contractors (1985).
At the end of the Cold War, he wrote, 'I am drowning in the realization that I chose the wrong path.'
Credit: C. Fishel
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Year In Review:
In 2016, Out of 3 Votes: 100% Annoying
In 2015, Out of 9 Votes: 55.56% Annoying
In 2014, Out of 20 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
In 2013, Out of 24 Votes: 62.50% Annoying
In 2012, Out of 14 Votes: 64.29% Annoying
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