9:35pm – Tuesday, January 12 on ABC1
This is the inside story of the hunt to trap the most damaging spy of all time. Based on witness testimony and official case records that remained secret until now, it’s about betrayal from within, by a traitor believed to be a friend.
In the heart of Washington DC there’s a spy among the very people charged with protecting the nation – the FBI. The traitor must be uncovered before he betrays more precious secrets. How can the traitor be netted and can the shocking claims be probed without alerting a man who knows every trick of the spying trade.
The treachery of turncoat FBI boss Robert Hanssen led to the torture and death of several agents and cost the United States billions of dollars. The most sensitive spy-on-spy mission ever mounted was handed to 27-year-old rookie Eric O’Neill who, with only four years experience at the FBI, had to draw out the 25-year veteran spymaster and catch him off guard.
Using O’Neill’s testimony and a stylishly crafted reconstruction, the operation which had been underway for nearly two decades, reached a nerve-wracking climax when ‘Graysuit’ was arrested at a ‘dead drop’ in a park near his home.
The details of Hanssen’s double life were extraordinary. The father of six who was a God-fearing guardian of state security on the outside was revealed as a man who posted bizarre sex fantasies on the internet and rigged a secret bedroom camera so his voyeur friend could watch Hanssen having sex with his school-teacher wife.
There was no manual for a mission like this. In the secret world of counter-intelligence it was a nightmare scenario. The spy catchers had a spy in their midst. Now Robert Hanssen is serving life in prison – in solitary confinement.