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Not-So-Close Encounters With a Russian Spy

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Misha Japaridze/AP

This story has been updated.

Notorious Russian spy Anna Chapman got a little too close to a Cabinet official, still serving in the Obama administration, Wired magazine's Danger Room blog reported.

Frank Figliuzzi, head of counterintelligence for the FBI, revealed Chapman attempted to seduce a member of Obama's inner circle.

"She got close enough to disturb us," he said.

Chapman's attempted seduction led the bureau, which was only monitoring Chapman and her spy ring, to close in and arrest the 10 Russians in 2010.

"We were becoming very concerned," Figliuzzi said. "They were getting close enough to a sitting U.S. Cabinet member that we thought we could no longer allow this to continue."

Figliuzzi refused to name the Cabinet member Chapman targeted.

Update:

The FBI has denied the news that Chapman got "dangerously close"  to a Cabinet official. FBI spokesman Paul Bresson said that head of counterintelligence Frank Figliuzzi was misquoted.

Figliuzzi's comments, “were consistent with and confined to the information outlined in the criminal complaint [against the Chapman spy ring] that was filed nearly two years ago," Bresson said. "There is no allegation or suggestion in the complaint that Anna Chapman or anyone else associated with this investigation attempted to seduce a U.S. Cabinet official.”

 

Caitlin Fairchild joined Government Executive in summer 2011 as an editorial fellow, after graduating from the College of William & Mary, where she spent four years writing for the student newspaper, The Flat Hat. In March 2012, she was hired full time as a web producer. She has completed internships at Washingtonian Magazine and at the public affairs office of Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas.

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