In the first case of a foreign resident being tried for espionage in West Germany, a former U.S. soldier has been sentenced to life in prison for passing NATO secrets to the East over a decade.
The Rhineland Palatinate state court convicted former Army Sgt. 1st Class Clyde Lee Conrad, 43, of treason onWednesday.It found that the Sebring, Ohio, native had passed classified material to the Hungarian and Czechoslovak secret services from 1975 through 1985 and received about $1.2 million for his efforts.
Chief Judge Ferdinand Schuth said Conrad "endangered the entire defense capability of the West." In reading the judgment, the judge said Conrad's motive for spying was "pure greed."
He said had war broken out, the information Conrad passed to the Soviet bloc countries "could have led to a breakdown in the defenses of the Western alliance" and "to capitulation and the use of nuclear weapons on German territory."