THE wife of Jonathan Toebbe, the US Navy nuclear engineer accused of trying to sell secrets to a foreign power, is a fierce progressive and Black Lives Matter supporter, it has been revealed.
Diana Toebbe, who was also charged with selling classified information to an undercover FBI agent posing as a foreign agent, has a history of supporting liberal figures and causes on social media.
The 45-year-old’s social media posts on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook were examined by Fox News, which said she uses her maiden name, Smay, on the platforms.
Among the findings are a profile picture that reads “Black Lives Matter” and a post celebrating Black Out Tuesday last year, when social media users protested racism by posting a black square and taking a break from posting for a day.
Diana’s Twitter account also allegedly follows several anti-Trump accounts such as the “Rogue NASA” account, which claims to be “the unofficial ‘Resistance’ team of NASA.”
Moreover, days after the inauguration of Donald Trump as president in 2017, Diana retweeted an image that read:
“To the rest of the world, due to an insufficient amount of moral courage, America is temporarily out of order. We hope to restore service as quickly as possible.
“In the meantime, we in the resistance movement join hands with those around the world who realize we are one people. May the forces of good be with us. #TheResistance.”
Diana’s alleged Facebook account included various posts supporting 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton as well as the LGBTQ community, including one photo of the transgender flag.
She also posted a meme in October 2016, which read: “Women can stop Trump.”
The now-fired teacher appears to be a fan of late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, as she shared one of her quotes a few days after her death.
It read: “Fight for the things you care about.”
Her most recent profile picture shows her posing with purple hair in a selfie.
Diana’s Instagram mostly showed pictures of her family and other daily life details such as dinners.
Fox News also reviewed Jonathan’s Facebook account, and found the last post was from 2013.
His posts included stories from the site website The Onion, including one with the headline: “New GOP Strategy Involves Reelecting Obama, Making His Life Even More Miserable.”
On Monday it also emerged that the accused couple, both registered democrats, were once high school teachers in Denver.
Jonathan was a science teacher at Kent Denver school between 2005 and 2008, while Diana also taught science there from 2005 to 2012, according to 9News.
Diana and Jonathan, 42, were arrested in West Virginia on Saturday after he placed a removable memory card at a prearranged “dead drop”, according to the Justice Department.
The criminal complaint detailing his espionage-related charges explains his mission to sell the secrets to a foreign power.
The scheme began back in April 2020, the FBI said, when Toebbe sent a package of Navy documents to a foreign government.
He is said to have written that he was interested in selling manuals, performance reports and other sensitive information regarding Virginia-class nuclear sub reactors.
Authorities said Toebbe also provided instructions for how to conduct the covert relationship, with a letter that said: “I apologize for this poor translation into your language.
“Please forward this letter to your military intelligence agency. I believe this information will be of great value to your nation. This is not a hoax.”
The unidentified foreign government sat on the explosive info until December last year, when they are reported to have turned them over to US authorities.
According to the criminal complaint, Toebbe hid encrypted memory cards in a peanut butter sandwich, a chewing gum packet and a band-aid wrapper.
The 42-year-old had worked for the US government since 2012, boasting a top-secret security clearance and specializing in naval nuclear propulsion.
The FBI said he was also assigned to a government-owned lab in Pittsburgh that works on nuclear power for the US Navy.
A painstaking months-long mission then began to convince the father-of-two he was in contact with a representative of the foreign government.
An undercover FBI agent is said to have made contact with Toebbe and agreed to pay thousands of dollars in cryptocurrency for the information he was offering.
After gaining the trust of the initially wary engineer, the agent sent him $10,000 in cryptocurrency, in what was described as a sign of good faith, documents show.
Weeks later, federal agents say they watched as the Toebbes arrived at an agreed-upon location in West Virginia for the exchange.
Diana appeared to serve as a lookout for her husband during a dead-drop operation for which the FBI forked out $20,000, officials said.
Law enforcement recovered a blue memory card wrapped in plastic, placed between two slices of bread on a half of a peanut butter sandwich, court documents say.
The records on the memory card included design elements and performance characteristics of Virginia-class submarine reactors.
The Justice Department describes those submarines as “cruise missile fast-attack submarines, which incorporate the latest in stealth, intelligence gathering, and weapons systems technology.”
The memory card also included a typed message that said, in part: “I hope your experts are very happy with the sample provided and I understand the importance of a small exchange to grow our trust.”
In another message, Toebbe is said to have made clear he hoped his supposed foreign ally would be able to extract him and his family if he was ever in danger, saying: “We have passports and cash set aside for this purpose.”
The FBI say it conducted similar dead-drop exchanges over the next several months, including one in August in eastern Virginia for which Toebbe was paid roughly $70,000.
In that instance, prosecutors say he concealed a memory card in a chewing gum package that contained schematic designs for the Virginia-class submarine.
LEAKING US “LESSONS”
The criminal complaint against the pair alleges violations of the Atomic Energy Act, which restricts the disclosure of information related to atomic weapons or nuclear materials.
The email exchanges suggest that Toebbe was offering the sensitive information to a nation that already has nuclear submarines.
In one message, he allegedly said the leaked data “reflects decades of U.S. Navy ‘lessons learned’ that will help keep your sailors safe.”
Toebbe used two pseudonyms – Alice Hill and Bob Burn – throughout the emails in an attempt to conceal his true identity, officials say.
It is unclear how many counts the couple, who live in Annapolis, Maryland face.
Espionage carries a maximum sentence of ten years under US law.
Toebbe’s wife Diana, who is a humanities teacher at the Key School has been suspended indefinitely from the private teaching facility in Annapolis.
The pair are scheduled to appear in a West Virginia federal court on Tuesday.
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