So it seems like the espionage case involving the wife of a former Navy nuclear engineer who played the part of a lookout for her hubby while he betrayed his nation and passed military secrets to a person that he thought was an agent of another country is a story ripped right out of the mind of Tom Clancy, as yet another twist in the narrative unfolds.
According to CBS News, the traitorous couple will now be receiving a harsher sentence after U.S. District Judge Gina Groh rejected their plea deals. Originally, Diana Toebbe, a former school teacher, was supposed to be receiving a 21 year prison sentence while Jonathan Toebbe was sentenced to 18 years behind bars.
That’s all changed now.
“U.S. District Judge Gina Groh, who imposed the sentences, unexpectedly rejected the couple’s initial plea deals in August after she deemed the sentencing guidelines reached by the government and defense teams to be insufficient and not reflective of the crime. At the time, the government sought up to 17.5 years for Jonathan Toebbe and three years for Diana Toebbe,” the report said.
The couple then immediately withdrew their initial guilty pleas and a trial was set for January. But the couple entered new guilty pleas in September,” the report continued. “Prosecutors alleged they tried to sell information about nuclear-powered submarines to a foreign government. The New York Times reported Brazilian officials alerted the FBI after receiving a package from Jonathan Toebbe with Navy documents and instructions about how to contact him.”
The FBI then took up the part of an agent from another country, apparently playing the role so well they deserve an Oscar. During a series of dead drops, Jonathan Toebbe passed on a series of military secrets to his contacts. One of these exchanges featured Toebbe passing on information concealed within a memory card that was, I kid you not, stuffed inside a peanut butter sandwich, according to information contained in court filings.
The judge went on to say that the damage the former naval engineer did to the country is still not clear.
“It was most probably Mrs. Toebbe that was driving the bus,” the judge commented. “She was part of the plan.”
“Groh did not appear sympathetic to Diana Toebbe throughout the hours-long hearing, condemning what she characterized as an obstructive jailhouse act in which she tried to pass a letter to her husband while they were both incarcerated in which she urged him to follow their set plan and absolve her of wrongdoing,” CBS News said.
“She wanted [her husband] to lie,” the judge explained.
The pair has two children. One is 16-years-old and lives in Maryland, while the other, 12, is now living in California with family members, a lawyer revealed in court on Wednesday.
To be honest, the couple is getting off pretty easy. In my honest opinion, this is treason and the two should be charged with that and promptly given the death penalty. They did this knowingly. It wasn’t an accident. Why go easy on them?
Regardless, they deserve a harsher sentence than the original one they were given. It’s nice to see a judge acknowledging that fact and seeking to serve justice properly.