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Defense finishes its case in Regan spy trial


ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) _ With testimony complete in the trial of spy suspect Brian Patrick Regan, lawyers for both sides prepared for one last chance to sway jurors.

The defense rested Thursday, without calling Regan to the stand. The 40-year-old father of four from Bowie, Md., has pleaded innocent to charges he attempted to sell classified information to Iraq, Libya and China for $13 million.

He could, if convicted, become the first American executed for spying since 1953, when Ethel and Julius Rosenberg were put to death for conspiring to steal U.S. atomic secrets for the Soviet Union.

Closing arguments in the case are scheduled for Monday.

The defense ended its arguments by playing videotapes for the judge and jury in a closed-door session, the first time the public was excluded during two weeks of testimony. Regan's lawyers declined to say what was on the tapes.

The last two defense witnesses were national security experts, who testified Thursday the U.S. intelligence Regan was carrying when he was arrested on Aug. 23, 2001, would not have harmed America if sold to a foreign government.

``The information was not terribly significant,'' said Maynard Anderson, former acting deputy undersecretary of defense for security policy. ``It did not provide anyone any information that was not publicly known.''

Anderson and Alan Shaw, an analyst with the Center for Naval Analysis, a Washington-area defense think tank, noted Secretary of State Colin Powell revealed some U.S. intelligence-gathering abilities during his presentation Wednesday to the United Nations on Iraq.

Regan was arrested at Dulles International Airport outside Washington, D.C., before boarding a flight to Zurich, Switzerland. He was carrying coded coordinates of missile sites in Iraq and China, the types of missiles stored there and the dates the information was obtained. The data allegedly came from classified satellite photographs of the missile sites.

While Regan is only accused of attempted espionage, U.S. security would not have suffered had he given Iraq, China or Libya the information he was carrying at the time of his arrest, Anderson said.

``They already know of our capability to make that determination,'' Anderson said. ``There is a great deal of information in the public realm that describe many of our technical collectors of information, including satellites.''

Regan, a retired Air Force master sergeant, worked at the National Reconnaissance Office, the government's satellite spy agency, first for the Air Force and then as a civilian employee of defense contractor TRW Inc.
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