Hawaii couple charged with stealing IDs of dead Texas kids, conspiring against the government

HONOLULU (AP) — A U.S. protection contractor and his wife, who lived for decades less than the identities of two dead Texas youngsters, have been billed with id theft and conspiring towards the federal government, in accordance to federal courtroom documents unsealed in Honolulu.

Walter Glenn Primrose and Gwynn Darle Morrison, both of those in their 60s, allegedly lived for decades below the names Bobby Edward Fort and Julie Lyn Montague, respectively. They have been arrested Friday in Kapolei on the island of Oahu.

Prosecutors are seeking to have the pair held with out bail, which could show the scenario is about more than fraudulently acquiring drivers’ licenses, passports and Protection Office credentials.

Those documents served Primrose get magic formula protection clearance with the U.S. Coast Guard and as a protection contractor, and previous images exhibit the pair donning uniforms of the KGB, the previous Russian spy agency, Assistant U.S. Legal professional Thomas Muehleck mentioned in court docket papers. Light Polaroids of each and every in uniform were being incorporated in the movement to have them held.

A “close associate” stated Morrison lived in Romania whilst it was a Soviet bloc place, Muehleck stated.

Morrison’s legal professional explained her customer hardly ever lived in Romania and that she and Primrose attempted the exact jacket on as a joke and posed for photographs in it. Even if the pair applied new identities, lawyer Megan Kau explained to The Connected Push, they have lived regulation-abiding life for a few a long time.

“She desires every person to know she’s not a spy,” Kau claimed. “This has all been blown way out of proportion. It’s governing administration overreaching.”

Prosecutors reported there is a higher hazard the pair would flee if freed. They also suggested that Primrose, who was an avionics electrical technician in the Coastline Guard, was highly competent to communicate secretly if launched.

This undated photograph provided by the United States District Court docket District of Hawaii displays Gwynn Darle Morrison, aka Julie Lyn Montague. Morrison and her partner a U.S. defense contractor who federal authorities say lived for many years beneath the identities of two useless Texas kids have been charged with identity theft and conspiring in opposition to the federal government. Walter Glenn Primrose and Morrison ended up arrested, Friday, July 22, 2022, in Kapolei on the island of Oahu. (United States District Court docket District of Hawaii by using AP)

The couple is also thought to have other aliases, Muehleck stated.

A law firm for Primrose declined comment. A bail hearing was scheduled for Thursday in U.S. District Courtroom.

The mystery clearance Primrose experienced presents access to details that is “enormously valuable to our enemies,” stated Kevin O’Grady, a Honolulu defense attorney not involved in the case.

The Coastline Guard is effective closely with the Military and Navy, will help with counterintelligence and serves as the country’s maritime border patrol, reported O’Grady, an Military reservist and lieutenant colonel decide advocate.

“The Coastline Guard has a exclusive viewpoint on our vulnerabilities,” he reported, which includes how to infiltrate the region as a result of water ports. Hawaii, a major military services centre, “is a key goal for a good deal of espionage and these kinds of,” he claimed.

For 1 family members whose deceased child’s identify was stolen, the information Wednesday arrived as a shock.

John Montague, who shed his daughter Julie in 1968 at 3 weeks of age, was surprised to master another person had been living underneath her name for so extensive.

“I however can’t believe it took place,” Montague, 91, explained to the AP. “The odds are like just one-in-a-trillion that they uncovered her and applied her identify. Individuals stoop to do nearly anything nowadays. Allow children rest in peace.”

This undated photo provided by the United States District Court District of Hawaii displays Walter Glenn Primose, also recognised as Bobby Edward Fort. Primose, a U.S. defense contractor, and his spouse who federal authorities say lived for decades beneath the identities of two lifeless Texas young children have been charged with id theft and conspiring in opposition to the government. Primrose and Gwynn Darle Morrison were arrested, Friday, July 22, 2022, in Kapolei on the island of Oahu. (United States District Courtroom District of Hawaii by way of AP)

Primrose and Morrison have been born in 1955 and they attended large college alongside one another in Port Lavaca, Texas, and then went to Stephen F. Austin University, in accordance to courtroom records. They married in 1980.

There is no indication in court docket papers why the couple in 1987 assumed the identities of deceased young children who would have been more than a decade younger than them. But an affidavit filed by Specific Agent Dennis Thomas of the Point out Department’s Diplomatic Protection Assistance noted that the pair missing their dwelling in Nacogdoches, Texas, to foreclosure that calendar year.

They remarried below their assumed names in 1988, Thomas stated.

Court docket data never give any details about what occurred from the time they assumed their new identities until finally 1994, when Primrose, then about 39, enlisted in the Coastline Guard as Fort, who would have been about 27.

If there was an obvious age discrepancy among what Primrose looked like and the start certification he introduced, “that’s an abject failure,” O’Grady said.

“That’s one thing if they can determine it out now, they should have caught it then,” he said.

Montague stated that “somebody’s not carrying out their employment.”

Primrose and Morrison applied for and gained numerous passports beneath their assumed names, according to courtroom information. But in 1999, Primrose also applied for and was issued a passport below his legal name while also keeping a passport in Fort’s name.

Primrose was in the support until finally 2016, when he started get the job done for an unnamed defense contractor at the U.S. Coast Guard Air station at Barbers Issue.

“While he held that top secret clearance with the U.S. Coast Guard, defendant Primrose was essential to report any foreign journey,” prosecutors wrote. “Investigation has exposed that defendant Primrose did not report various excursions to Canada although he did report other foreign journey.”

The pair lived in a Honolulu suburb in a modest two-bedroom bungalow beneath palm trees. They owned a neighboring house they rented to military services staff, stated Mai Ly Schara, who lived next door.

She knew them as Bob and Lynn, with Morrison apparently Julie Lyn Montague’s middle name.

Primrose did lawn get the job done for Schara for $50 a thirty day period, she explained. Morrison took in, fed and spayed and neutered cats. She also had a number of rabbits and focused a place to the animals.

“They saved to themselves, but they were being pleasant,” Schara reported. “They just kind of have been, like, a tiny nerdy.”

Schara was not guaranteed what Primrose did for a residing, but believed it was army connected. Morrison when labored as a parking attendant at a Waikiki lodge but experienced been tutoring community small children.

The FBI created a scene in the tranquil neighborhood when they searched the household and took photos.

“It was just stunning, like, oh my gosh,” Schara mentioned. “It was pretty nuts.”

The house where by U.S. defense contractor Walter Glenn Primrose and his wife, Gwynn Darlle Morrison, lived for a long time allegedly under aliases is pictured, Wednesday, July 27, 2022, in Kapolei, Hawaii. They have been billed with identification theft and conspiring in opposition to the governing administration just after prosecutors allege they stole the identities of dead Texas little ones decades in the past. (AP Picture/Caleb Jones)

The State Department declined to comment on the arrests.

The couple is billed with conspiracy to commit an offense against the U.S., fake assertion in passport application and aggravated identification theft.

Fort, who lived fewer than three months, died in October 1967 at the same healthcare facility where Julie Montague passed away about three months afterwards in January 1968. They are buried 14 miles (23 kilometers) apart.

When Tonda Ferguson figured out from her father that Morrison had utilized her late sister’s birth certification to create an alias, she imagined of her mother, who died in 2003, and how many many years had absent by.

“For all the moms who are dwelling and have to know this happened to their babies, I can not even get started to envision,” Ferguson reported. “I’m glad my mama’s with the Lord. This would be so traumatic for her.”

Ferguson was in eighth quality when her sister died. She in no way bought to see her small sister or keep her. She was buried in Burnet, Texas, the modest town wherever they lived at the time outdoors of Austin.

“She came from a spot of appreciate, deep enjoy,” Ferguson reported. “For a person to change all around to steal her identity for evil, it is tricky. It’s hurtful. … I hope they rot.”