Wen Ho Lee agrees to more questioning

ALBUQUERQUE - Former Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee, who was jailed for nine months after being accused of downloading nuclear secrets, has agreed to further FBI questioning under a modified plea agreement.

Lee will undergo almost 13 additional hours of questioning over two days.

He had agreed to 10 days of questioning as part of a plea agreement, in which he pleaded guilty in September to one count of mishandling nuclear secrets and was sentenced to time served. He had been charged with 59 counts.

Under the new agreement, filed Nov. 7, questioning under oath was to take place between Nov. 16 and Nov. 21. A modification delayed the debriefings until Dec. 11.

Lee was fired from Los Alamos National Laboratory last year and accused of downloading nuclear information to unsecured computer tapes. He is officially considered retired and receives a lab pension, Los Alamos lab officials have said.

The debriefings are aimed at locating seven missing computer tapes, which Lee has said he destroyed. In court, Lee said he never intended to give the tapes or their contents to ''any unauthorized third party.''

The FBI would not comment on what Lee told them during the debriefings.

''It's an ongoing process,'' FBI supervisory Special Agent Doug Beldon said.

The new filings said Lee will ''continue to identify any storage spaces including but not limited to safety deposit boxes, computers and computer accounts under his control, and he will agree to allow the United States to search them.''


On the Net:

Department of Energy: http://www.energy.gov/

Los Alamos National Lab: http://www.lanl.gov/


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