This past January Blumenfeld expanded on that theme, again at the expense of Guerrero and his fellow sleuths. While cross-examining FBI supervisory special agent Richard Giannotti, the lawyer picked up a navy blue cardboard box half the size of a shoebox, on which the words "War Planes" were printed. FBI agents had seized the box from the Hollywood apartment of defendant Ramon Labañino the day of his arrest. The federal prosecutors presented the box, which contained glossy cards with photos of military aircraft and a receipt for $6.88 -- as evidence the spies were studying U.S. military planes. "They are kind of like baseball cards, for us old-timers," Blumenfeld said, trying to describe them for the jury. "But instead they have pictures of aircraft on them."
Blumenfeld pulled out one the prosecution had not shared with the jury and put it on an overhead projector. It was an Albatros, the small propeller plane German pilots such as the Red Baron flew during World War I. "I'd like to stipulate that I took it from the box," Blumenfeld joked.
Lawyers for five Cuban spies are trying to shoot down the evidence, including Government Exhibit SAV-52, a box of aircraft cards available at department stores near you
Last week retired U.S. Navy Admiral Eugene Carroll, an expert on U.S. and Cuban military capabilities who flew in from Washington, D.C., testified that far more detailed information is available in publications such as Jane's Defense Weekly. Blumenfeld also asked Carroll to testify whether he thought procedures at a U.S. military base could be lax enough to allow a sheet-metal worker to get anywhere near classified or top-secret information, even if he wanted to.
"Objection," yelled prosecutor David Buckner. The question called for speculation, he protested, and was outside the scope of Carroll's expertise.
"Sustained," replied Judge Joan Lenard.
The jury will have the chance to answer that question and others raised by the fatherland defense when the trial concludes, probably in April.