On this day, June 4, in 1986, Jonathan Pollard pleaded guilty to espionage for selling top secret U.S. military intelligence to Israel.
The Navy intelligence analyst's scheme was discovered when supervisors learned that he was removing enormous amounts of top secret material that was outside his purview. Pollard took enough information to fill an office.
While Pollard was being questioned, he took a break, called his wife and said their code word "cactus," meaning that she should remove all documents from their Dupont Circle area home.
When his bosses let him go, Pollard and his wife tried to gain asylum at the Israeli Embassy in D.C. But the guards ordered the couple to leave, and the FBI arrested him.
Pollard admitted his guilt and received a life sentence.
-- Scott McCabe