Cover image for Spy hunter : inside the FBI investigation of the Walker espionage case
Spy hunter : inside the FBI investigation of the Walker espionage case
Hunter, Robert W., 1936-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Annapolis, Md. : Naval Institute Press, [1999]

Physical Description:
x, 250 pages, 12 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
UB271.R92 W34375 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Hunter, a foreign counterintelligence agent for the FBI, was lead investigator in the case against master spy John Walker, who led what top officials called the most damaging espionage ring in US history. He presents an insider's account of the detection, pursuit, and capture of the US Navy communications expert and his partners in espionage. This work is the first to discuss interviews with Walker's relatives, with judges and prosecutors involved in the case, and with the KGB general who supervised Walker. Annotation copyrighted by Book News, Inc., Portland, OR

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

John Walker's spying, exposed in 1985, was damaging because it enabled the Soviets to decrypt U.S. military messages in real time. Considering what the Allies did to the Germans with the same advantage, Walker's perfidy could have been deadly in a war, and might actually have been to U.S. personnel during the Vietnam War, during which he walked into the Soviet embassy with his proposition. The Hunters' is at least the third book about the case (Howard Blum's I Pledge Allegiance remains in print), and they open with the day at Robert's Norfolk FBI office when he learned that a sotted Barbara Walker claimed her ex-husband, an ex-Navy code officer then living in Norfolk, was a Soviet spy. Robert Hunter laid on the telephone taps and surveillance that duly nailed Walker trying to service a dead drop. This sleuthing operation is the heart of the book, which thereafter focuses on his views of various FBI colleagues, of the Naval Investigative Service (negative), and of Walker himself (contemptuous). An interesting eyewitness account. --Gilbert Taylor

Library Journal Review

John Walker was one of the Soviet Union's most successful agents for nearly 20 years before he was finally caught in May 1985 by the author, an FBI counterintelligence agent. Hunter's story, told over a decade after the fact, remains a riveting tale. He and his fellow agents were able to capture Walker and also implicate Walker's brother and son in an espionage ring that had been operating for years out of the naval base in Norfolk, VA. Hunter does not hide his disdain for his quarry, a man who probably provided over a million pages of classified documents to the Soviets over two decades and seriously compromised U.S. defense capabilities. Hunter is not a professional writer, and his prose is stilted in spots, but this only makes the text more believable as it delves into FBI spy-breaking methods, which are at times surprisingly unsophisticated. For those who like John le Carr‚ novels, here is a book that is all the more chilling because it really happened. For general collections.ÄEdward Goedeken, Iowa State Univ. Lib., Ames (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.