Described as the flamed-haired beauty of Russia, Anna Vasilyevna Chapman was born as Anna Vasil’yevna Kushchyenko in Volograd, former Stalingrad, on 23 February 1982. Her father, a senior KGB official, was employed in the Soviet embassy in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya in Africa. From her early days Anna excelled as a student and earned a master's degree in economics with first class honours from Moscow University and her links to the West begun at the age of 19, during her days at the University. As an economics graduate with an IQ of 162 and a taste for the high life, Anna moved to London in 2000 and found a short-term job in the financial and aviation industries.
She met Alex Chapman, a Briton trainee psychologist, at an underground rave party in London's Docklands in 2001and married him five months later, in Moscow in 2002.Though they divorced in 2006, the marriage gave her a new surname and a British passport, which she retained, even after the divorce.
Much later, Alex Chapman disclosed that Anna was great in bed and they had a whirlwind romance, which include sex abroad a BA flight back to Moscow in January 2002. He was not surprised, when it was revealed to him that his flame haired ex-wife had been tasked with seducing power brokers in the US capital Washington DC. He confessed that Anna had told him that her father was a high ranking official in the Russian security services. Alex strongly felt that her father controlled everything in her life and she could do anything for her dad. According to him, towards the end of their marriage, Anna became very secretive and often used to go out for meetings on her own with her Russian friends. When he insisted to accompany, she tried to discourage by saying that they would all be speaking Russian. Though she was not materialistic at the beginning of their intimacy, later she was transformed into someone with access to a lot of money, boasting about all the influential people she was meeting.
After their divorce, Anna relocated to New York in 2009, taking up residence at 20 Exchange Place, where with the aid of a $1m cash injection from the Russian Government, she set up an internet property business. With the intention to pursue her career as a self-styled entrepreneur, she began using the online social networks, which include LinkedIn and Facebook, especially to develop business contacts and to market her skills as a person, who love to launch innovative high-tech startups and building passionate teams to bring value into the market. According to her real estate Web site, she was the owner of a real estate firm in Manhattan valued at $2 million, selling real estate internationally.
In fact, with her inviting look and voluptuous curves, Anna Chapman was part of a group known as the Illegal's Programme, a network of Russian sleeper agents under non-official cover and all her business activities as a real estate firm was a cover of her spying activities. She was among a group, planted by SVR, Russia's foreign intelligence service, who tried to blend into American society in an apparent bid to get close to the power brokers and learn secrets. By posing as ordinary Americans, they tried to build contacts with the academics, industrialists and politicians to gather information.
However, since the moment she arrived in the US, the FBI monitored all her activities, focusing particularly on her weekly communications sent to the second secretary of the Russian mission to the United Nations. According to their documents, Chapman visited various Manhattan locations like, Starbucks, Barnes & Noble, where she used to establish a local wireless network between her laptop and that of the UN official, who was parked in a van nearby.
On June 26 of 2010, an undercover FBI agent, posing as a Russian operative, contacted Chapman by phone and urged for an appointment at a downtown coffee shop. The FBI agent, who called himself Roman, recorded their conversation, before handing her a fake US passport, asking her to deliver it to another of the Illegal agent. Chapman left the Coffee shop with the fraudulent document and visited Brooklyn, bought a cell phone as Irine Kutsov and tossed her phone contact carelessly into a trash bin, which was later retrieved by the FBI. After that, Anna called her father, who was by that time holding a good position in the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Presumably, he advised his daughter the way how to handle the situation and probably she followed her father’s advice, as on the following day, she entered the 1st Precinct in Lower Manhattan and handed the fake passport to the police, followed by the arrival of the FBI agents.
Anna Chapman was arrested on 27 June 2010, along with ten other alleged members of the Illegal's Programme, as part of the Russian spy ring. As Anna pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy of acting as an agent of a foreign government, she and the other ten, were deported to Russia on 8 July 2010. Learning about her intention to return to the United Kingdom, the UK government revoked her British citizenship and excluded her from the country.
At the time of the arrest of the agents in the summer of 2010, it was not clear, whether any of the ten persons had been particularly successful in uncovering strategically useful military or technical information. However, the American officials were convinced that most of the accused were born in Russia and had been given sophisticated training before resettling in the US, posing as married couples.
One of the agents, known as Cynthia Murphy and reported to be a financial planner, had an annual income of $135,000, which is surprising. Before US President Barack Obama's visit to Moscow, Murphy and her husband were instructed to size up American intentions from their home in New Jersey and consequently, Anna had almost caught a senior member of President Barack Obama’s cabinet in a so called honey trap operation.
Though Anna Chapman was marked as the femme fatale of the spy case with Cold War-style intrigue, Anna Chapman's behavior at the time like, registering a cell phone under the address 99 Fake Street and telephoning her father in Moscow at the first sign of trouble, was considered as acts unlike a spy. However, later it was reported that, along with other Illegal persons, Anna Chapman had spent considerable time at Putin’s Black Sea villa and only Anna had been singled out for a ride in Putin’s personal submarine beneath the surface of Lake Baikal. According to sources, Anna was very much known as Putin’s girl.
On her return to Russia, Anna Chapman gained celebrity status and found a job at the public council of Young Guard of United Russia. Later she also worked as a TV presenter on a show called Mysteries of the World for Ren TV. Magazines and blogs detailed Chapman's fashion style and she posed on the cover of a reputed Russian magazine, which included her in its list of Russia's 100 sexiest women. Once married to a British, Chapman has now become a multi-millionaire and is a propagandist for the Kremlin.