WASHINGTON - A 23-year-old Russian man who became the 12th person taken into custody in the recent spy ring investigation made two trips to the United States, both times going to work for Microsoft in low-level jobs.
Microsoft spokesman Lou Gellos said Wednesday that Alexey Karetnikov interned at the company’s headquarters in Redmond, Wash., from June until late August 2008, then returned to Russia.
Gellos said that last year the same group at Microsoft that Karetnikov worked for on his first trip hired him as a software tester.
Gellos said the company has reviewed Karetnikov’s activities and is confident that he did not compromise software, the company’s internal resources or its customers.
Though he lived for a while little more than a dozen miles from one of the Russian agent couples who pleaded guilty and were deported, FBI agents never found any connection between Karetnikov and the couple, Michael Zottoli and Patricia Mills.