Neither sporadic nor isolated activity, underlines the judge. At the validation hearing this morning he made use of the right not to answer, leaving the lawyer Roberto De Vita the task of summarizing his position: a mistake made “in a moment of profound personal, family and economic crisis, even in because of her daughter’s serious health conditions “and, in any case, the officer assured, the passing of papers to the Russians “did not in any way jeopardize the security of the state”.
The interrogation scheduled for the validation hearing was therefore soon closed, with the officer merely telling judge Antonella Minunni that he was “confused and disoriented, but ready to clarify” his position. The defender asked for house arrest, but the magistrate – underlining the danger and the “criminal depth” – said no: the man therefore remains detained in Regina Coeli. In the meantime, the two Russian officials who had hooked the Italian, Alexey Nemudrov and Dmitri Ostroukhov, boarded a flight to Moscow this morning. They had received the deportation order, saving themselves from arrest thanks to diplomatic immunity. In the memory card seized by the Carabinieri del Ros who caught the exchange between Biot and the Russian officer red-handed, 181 photos of classified paper documents were found at the moment. The officer photographed them from the monitors of the Military Policy and Planning office of the Defense Staff, where he worked.
Also present 9 documents classified as “highly confidential” (the ranking of secrecy has four levels: “confidential”, the lowest, “highly confidential”, “secret” and “top secret”, the highest) and 47 of the “Born Secret” type. The investigating judge underlines that for his role Biot managed documents covered by secrecy preordained for the security of the state, dealing, among other things, with the projection of the Italian defense assets in foreign operational theaters and also with NATO, EU and UN operations. The order highlights the “accurate methods of acting” of the officer, who took a series of precautions so as not to arouse suspicion, such as, for example, “the insertion of the SD card in the medicine leaflet as well as the fact that no appointments or contacts with the Russian agent emerge from the telephones in his possession”.For the judge, they are “symptomatic elements of the criminal depth of the suspect who has not set himself any scruple in betraying the trust of the institution to which he belongs for the sole purpose of achieving economic profits”. The way of acting, according to the investigating judge, “shows in a hand-held manner the extreme danger of the subject given the professionalism demonstrated, which can be inferred from the many tools used (4 smartphones) and the measures adopted “.
The defender of Biot, for his part, said he was sure that the affair “will be reduced”, since the documents sold, as the Italian official assured, “did not in any way jeopardize the security of the state” .
That of the 56-year-old frigate captain was, therefore, a mistake “in a moment of great difficulty”. His wife Claudia Carbonara expressed the same line – «she was afraid of not being able to face the many expenses we have. The home economy “- is the 24-year-old son:” the only thing I believe – he explained – is that if my father did what he did it was to support the family, to keep the house, not to go against the state, against the homeland, because he served the homeland and the state for 35 years: he fought in the second Gulf War, was in Iraq, in Afghanistan ».
Such a thing, he added, “troubles us all. We are with patches on the ass, my sister and I do part time jobs, my father is the only one who can support us; if he is dishonorably discharged, the risk is that they will take away the underage children (Biot has 4 children, ed) because we cannot support them ». If one of the charges affecting the officer, political and military espionage is confirmed, the penalty provided for by article 257 of the Criminal Code is not less than 15 years, while life imprisonment can be triggered if “the fact compromised the preparation or the war efficiency of the state, or military operations ». In addition to the Rome prosecutor’s office, the military prosecutor’s office is also proceeding and soon there will be a meeting between the respective prosecutors to assess the competence.
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