Michael Peri

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Michael A. Peri
Born 1967 (age 48–49)
Nationality American
Known for Cold War

Michael Peri (born 1967) was a Military Intelligence Electronic Warfare Signals Analyst for the United States Army during the Cold War, who was convicted of espionage in 1989 and sentenced to 30 years in prison.


On February 20, 1989, Peri vanished from the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment (ACR) in Fulda, Germany. An exhaustive search was conducted to locate him when it was discovered that he had stolen a portable computer that was used to store classified military defense plans. Peri was not found, although it was suspected that he had defected to East Germany when a HMMWV that he had stolen was located near the East German border.[1] 11 days later, for reasons that have never been fully explained, Peri turned himself in at the front gate of the 11th ACR.[2] He was court-martialed for espionage, where he was convicted on June 25, 1989, and sentenced to 30 years.[3][4] Even after the conclusion of the court-martial, investigators were perplexed at what had caused this strange turn of events. Peri had twice been nominated for a "Soldier of the Month" award in his unit. During interrogation, Peri admitted he felt overworked and taken for granted by his superior officers. Other soldiers who were interrogated said Peri was often seen with an attractive woman whom they believed to be an East German agent. The woman whom he had been fraternizing with likely exploited his dissatisfaction with the Army to entice him to defecting to East Germany. Peri's voluntary return to West Germany and his surrender to MPs was most likely due to him being overcome by a guilty conscience for a rash decision.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Laguna Niguel GI Missing; Army Fears He's Defected : His Mother Expresses Concern". latimes.com. Retrieved 1 March 2012. 
  2. ^ "A G.I. in Germany is Accused of Spying". nytimes.com. Retrieved 1 March 2012. 
  3. ^ "Soldier Who Left Post in West Germany Is Charged". latimes.com. Retrieved 1 March 2012. 
  4. ^ "A U.S. Soldier Who Defected Is Given 30 Years for Spying". nytimes.com. Retrieved 1 March 2012. 

Further reading[edit]