Ryan Christopher Fogle, the “third secretary” at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow who was detained by Russia’s domestic intelligence agency and being accused of being a CIA spy Monday night, is a former frat boy and Daily Show fan from Missouri.According to the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), the successor to the KGB, Fogle was found in possession of a letter attempting to recruit an officer from one of Russia’s special services to work with the CIA, two wigs, three pairs of sunglasses, cash, and a knife, among other things. After he was detained, Fogle was turned over to the U.S. Embassy and expelled from Russia Tuesday.
Records link Fogle’s family to two different inner-ring suburbs of St. Louis, Mo, Clayton and Richmond Heights. He reportedly graduated from Mary Institute and St. Louis Country Day School, a high school in the wealthy St/ Louis suburb of Ladue, in 2002. Four years later, Fogle graduated from Colgate University.
While at Colgate, Fogle was a member of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity. He also was a member of the Konosioni Senior Honor Society, a group of 26 student leaders chosen by their peers each year to “preserve and promote a greater appreciation and understanding of Colgate’s honored heritage and celebrated traditions.” Fogle participated in student government and, at the end of his sophomore year, was elected to serve as an election commissioner. As a freshman, Fogle was a member of a committee that organized lectures on campus. In 2003, he discussed a lecture he helped plan featuring former Daily Show contributor Mo Rocca with the school newspaper. Fogle was clearly a big fan of the show.
“Not only is Mo Rocca a comedian, but he is extremely talented and well known. Almost everyone here watches the Daily Show with some consistency,” Fogle said. “When he’s on the show he’s absolutely hilarious.”
After college, Fogle stayed in touch with his classmates. A 2008 issue of a Colgate magazine said Fogle attended the Colgate-Georgetown football game in November 2007 with other members of the class of 2006. The winter 2010-2011 issue of his fraternity’s newsletter included contact information for Fogle in Virginia and indicated he wanted to correspond with fraternity members. In late 2011, the email address Fogle listed in the fraternity newsletter was among those identified as belonging to subscribers to briefings published by the global intelligence company Stratfor in a release from the hacking group Anonymous.
Fogle also maintained a presence on Facebook, though most of his page was not visible to the general public. The only pictures that can be seen on his profile are nine photos of landmarks that seem to be from international travels including shots of Masada, the Kremlin, and the Great Sphinx of Giza. Fogle’s profile picture is a photo of waves hitting a beach.
Though Fogle left behind a digital trail, those who knew him offline provided no information about him to TPM. Multiple former classmates of Fogle’s declined to discuss him. A woman who answered the phone at his family home in Missouri who identified herself as “Ms. Fogle” also did not wish to speak with us.
“I don’t really have anything to say. Thank you though,” she said before hanging up.