Episode 141: Bill Kinane – FBI in Moscow, First Russian LEGAT

Retired agent Bill Kinane served in the FBI for 34 years. He spent most of his career in San Francisco, but also served in the Seattle, New York, and Chicago Divisions, and with the FBI in Moscow. In this episode of FBI Retired Case File Review, Bill Kinane reviews the five years he served as the Assistant Legal Attaché (ALAT) and the Legal Attaché (LEGAT) of the FBI’s Office in Moscow, Russia, the first-ever official Bureau presence in the country. The office was opened at the invitation of Russian President Boris Yeltsin, and Bill Kinane established a working relationship with the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB). At the time, current Russian President Vladimir Putin was the head of the FSB, and Bill Kinane met with him and his team weekly. The Moscow LEGAT Office handled major investigations with a Russian nexus: Russian Organized Crime, money laundering, kidnappings of Americans in Russia, extortion, terrorism, movement of nuclear materials, and human trafficking. Bill Kinane, who has an advanced degree in Soviet Area Studies, and learned Russian and Serbo-Croatian from the Defense Language Institute at Monterey, CA while serving in the Marine Corps, also provides a brief history of the period. Upon his retirement, he went from working for the FBI in Moscow to working as a contract employee in Ukraine, Belarus and Albania. He later joined Guardsmark Corp. as a Senior VP. He now splits his time between California and Oregon.

Special Agent (Retired)

Bill Kinane

1/3/1966 – 12/31/1999









“Putin would drop into our meetings unannounced and on a regular basis, pretty much as an observer. I think he was incredulous that the FBI was sitting in KGB headquarters discussing mutual cases of interest.”

Here’s a link to an article about Russia and the FBI in Moscow in which retired agents and former Moscow LEGATS  Bill Kinane and Tom Fuentes are quoted and a link to more info about the FBI in Moscow:

The Telegraph – 5/1/2013:  Old habits die hard: the FBI and the Russian security services

U.S. Embassy and Consulate in Russia – Federal Bureau of Investigation

Jerri Williams

View posts by Jerri Williams
Jerri Williams, a retired FBI agent, author and podcaster, attempts to relive her glory days by writing crime fiction and hosting FBI Retired Case File Review, a true crime podcast available for subscription on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Spotify, and other popular podcast apps. Her novels—Pay To Play and Greedy Givers—inspired by actual true crime FBI cases and featuring temptation, corruption, and redemption, are available at amazon.com. 


  1. zvodretiluretDecember 5, 2018

    Yeah bookmaking this wasn’t a bad conclusion outstanding post! .

  2. Eila FarncombeNovember 8, 2018

    Bill Kinase. Definitely one of my favourite interviews. Great Podcasts Jerri, so interesting to hear things from your side.

    1. Jerri WilliamsNovember 8, 2018

      I agree. Bill did a great job explaining what the Moscow LEGAT does.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to top