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True Spies: Espionage | Investigation | Crime | Murder | Detective | Politics

SPYSCAPE
56 episodes
This podcast may contain explicit content.
True Spies takes you inside the world's greatest espionage and detective operations. Our hosts Hayley Atwell and Vanessa Kirby talk to the real spies behind the missions. What do they know? What are their skills? And what would you do in their position? We explore and investigate real life thrillers, mysteries and crimes - stories that prove truth is stranger than fiction! These stories cover lies, murder, theft, sex, drugs and rock ‘n roll. You’ll meet experts from the top intelligence agencies including FBI, CIA, MI5, MI6 (SIS), KGB, GRU, Mossad and many others. You’ll discover characters who spied because of money, ideology, coercion or just plain old ego. And, if you’d like to dig deeper into the world of secrets, and test your own secret intelligence skills, head over to spyscape.com for articles, games, experiences, puzzles and videos. A Cup & Nuzzle production. Series producer: Gemma Newby. Music: Nick Ryan.

Disclaimer: the content and artwork of this podcast are the property of its owner and are not affiliated with nor endorsed by Audiotrails.

Her Majesty's Secret Service

Protestant England faces an existential threat from Catholic Spain. Queen Elizabeth calls on Sir Francis Walsingham, the Royal spymaster, to undermine the Spanish war effort. Vanessa Kirby tells a story of loyalty, fear, and the terrible lengths to which a good spy will go to protect Queen and Coun…
51min

Searching For The Soldier

From the Australian outback, a top-secret NSA signals station intercepts intelligence concerning America and her allies. It's 1995, and a US fighter pilot is shot down over the former Yugoslavia. The team at Pine Gap must locate his distress signal before it's too late. Vanessa Kirby joins signals …
38min

Russia's Most Wanted

Bill Browder's fund made billions in the wake of the Soviet Union's collapse. But in the new Russia, the cost of doing business could be counted in more than cash. When Bill caught wind widespread financial corruption in the country, he decided to act - making powerful enemies in the process. Vanes…
45min

Operation Game Over

Vanessa Kirby meets Andrea Crosta, a dotcom tycoon turned undercover activist and elephant saviour. Confronted with the brutality of the illegal ivory trade, Andrea made it his mission to make a difference - by any means necessary. How hard would YOU fight for what you believe in? From SPYSCAPE, th…
48min

Indian Actors

Meet the EU Disinfo Lab, the open-source investigators exposing disinformation at the heart of Europe's most important institutions. In 2019, they discovered a complex network of websites and NGOs, all hijacked by actors with an anti-Pakistan agenda. Researcher Roman Adamczyk brings Vanessa Kirby o…
41min

Operation Zulu Cricket

What do you get if you combine South London's top undercover cop, the IRA, and a serious quantity of heroin? Operation Zulu Cricket. Peter Bleksley spent years breaking bread with some of Britain's most dangerous criminals, but in 1993, one mission pushed him to his limit. Vanessa Kirby explores a …
44min

New Russia, New Rules

It's 1993, and Russia is tearing itself apart. A violent coup is threatening to derail Boris Yeltsin's fragile post-Soviet government. Rolf Mowatt-Larssen, Deputy Chief of Station for the CIA in Moscow, is caught in the crossfire. To get out alive, he'll need to lean on an unlikely new ally - Russi…
38min

The Spy In The Cornfield

In the golden cornfields of rural Iowa, mysterious men are stealing seeds. Corn is big business - and the secret of growing good corn is priceless intellectual property. But is this a simple case of corporate theft, or foreign espionage in a vital strategic battle between nations? Vanessa Kirby joi…
43min

Bring Down The Big Man

From London to Lagos, a web of corruption is spreading. At its center is James Ibori, AKA The Big Man - a Nigerian politician with a taste for the high life. Vanessa Kirby meets Jonathan Benton, the British detective who followed the trail of dirty cash that put Ibori behind bars. But when allegati…
46min

Surviving NXIVM

In 2005, actress Sarah Edmondson joined NXIVM, a company offering 'personal development' coaching. 12 years later, she realized that she had been brainwashed into a dangerous sex-trafficking cult. She borrowed techniques from the world of spy tradecraft to bring down the man behind the curtain - Ke…
48min

The Profiler

July 20th, 1993. White House Counsel Vince Foster is found dead, apparently by his own hand. Rumours of foul play are circulating - and some very famous names are in the mix. FBI Profiler Jim Clemente must use his best tradecraft to find out what happened. Vanessa Kirby follows Jim on an investigat…
48min

The Not-So-Beautiful Game

It's high summer in the Italian beach resort of Rimini. But Garry Rogers isn’t on holiday. He’s working undercover, infiltrating some of Britain's most dangerous soccer hooligans as they enjoy the 1990 World Cup. Vanessa Kirby follows Garry into a violent world of booze, beatings and naked belliger…
36min

Putin's Palace?

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny believes the Russian state poisoned him in August 2020. In January 2021, he released a film that sent shockwaves through the country . Part-exposé, part-psychological portrait, his investigation claimed to reveal a culture of corruption within the Kremlin -…
41min

Inside NAMBLA

CW: This episode contains details relating to the sexual abuse of children. In 26 years undercover with the FBI, Bob Hamer developed a thick skin. He's posed as a contract killer, a drug dealer - even an international arms dealer. But there's one case he could never quite shake off. Vanessa Kirby t…
1h

Seven Female Spies

CW: This episode contains descriptions of Nazi war-crimes that some listeners may find upsetting. During the Second World War, Vera Atkins sent hundreds of British spies into Occupied France. Some of them never came back - and nobody knew why. Vanessa Kirby shares the story of one woman's mission t…
41min

Mandela's Spy

As an undercover officer in South Africa, Bradley Steyn played his part in a deadly culture of racial oppression - Apartheid. After meeting an inspirational freedom fighter, he made the life-changing decision to switch sides. For years, Bradley worked from the inside to destroy the institutions of …
45min

The Money Spy

How do you flee your country and join the other side? A former Russian intelligence agent gives Vanessa Kirby a rare masterclass in international tradecraft. Janosh Neumann fled Moscow armed only with his wits, a suitcase and the names of Russia's most influential money launderers, to begin a dange…
46min

Freeing Meek Mill

In 2017, superstar rapper Meek Mill was incarcerated - again. To free him, Tyler Maroney had to go back to the scene of Meek's first arrest a decade earlier, and use all his best tradecraft to contend with corrupt cops, biased judges and a broken prison system. Could YOU deliver justice to justice …
41min

How To Make Friends and Stage Coups

Damascus, 1949. A plot to bring down the Syrian government is brewing. Stewart Copeland voices the jazz musician, raconteur, and CIA agent pulling the strings - his father Miles Copeland. Vanessa Kirby tells his story - a tale of double agents, dangerous friendships and shoot-outs that shaped the f…
38min

Tradecraft, Part 2

A good spy needs a very particular set of skills. But there's only so much that training can prepare you for. Tradecraft - the real business of spying - has to be learnt on the job. In the second installment of an exciting 2-part special, Vanessa Kirby brings you the most cunning and courageous exa…
39min

Tradecraft, Part 1

A good spy needs a very particular set of skills. But there's only so much that training can prepare you for. Tradecraft - the real business of spying - has to be learnt on the job. In the first installment of an exciting two-part special, Vanessa Kirby brings you the most cunning and courageous ex…
45min

The Irishman

Ever get the feeling you're being watched? Vanessa Kirby meets the spy behind the camera. Sean Harnett worked at one of the British Army's most secretive regiments, responsible for tracking terrorists across Northern Ireland. As the secrets, lies and workload intensified, he found himself questioni…
50min

Olympic Games

Meet the men who uncovered a new era in global warfare. Eric Chien and Liam O'Murchu identified Stuxnet, the digital weapon designed to attack the physical world. To figure out its target, and its creators, they'd have to enter a dangerous world of international intrigue - involving two nuclear sup…
45min

The 'Dreams-Come-True' Business

Vanessa Kirby meets Barry Broman, a CIA case officer who recruited foreign spies for the USA. Working alongside a suave MI6 officer, Barry was tasked with bringing a high-ranking Communist over to the West. To succeed, they had to make him an offer he couldn't refuse. Could YOU get inside his head?…
37min

Blood On The Waterside

Vanessa Kirby meets a spy who infiltrated the political wing of the Irish Republican movement. Willie Carlin risked his life in Derry, Northern Ireland, on a daily basis to provide the UK with intelligence that could help to end decades of violence and killing. How far would YOU go for peace? From …
44min

Drug Wars

Vanessa Kirby goes undercover with a man who spent 14 years fighting the War on Drugs. Disguised as an addict, Neil Woods risked his life to infiltrate brutal narcotics gangs. The experience led him to question our whole approach to fighting the War on Drugs, and led him to a remarkable new strateg…
45min

Hacked

Vanessa Kirby meets Nick Davies, the reporter who used covert skills to break one of the most explosive stories of the Noughties. The News of the World, a British tabloid, had been deliberately hacking the mobile phones of celebrities and public figures. Through a carefully-chosen network of sour…
43min

Burgers & Spies

Vanessa Kirby meets Naveed Jamali, an FBI operative who worked his way into the world of espionage. Hoping to impress US Intelligence, Naveed used family connections to set himself up as a double agent, fooling the Russians into revealing their operations on American soil. Armed only with a secret …
39min

Codename: Madeleine

Vanessa Kirby lands in Nazi-occupied France with Noor Inayat Khan, the Allied spy who risked her life to aid the Resistance. Armed with a wireless radio, Noor relayed vital intelligence to the British Special Operations Executive, right under the nose of Hitler's secret police. The average life exp…
49min

Sister Spies

Vanessa Kirby meets Pat and Jean Owtram, two British sisters who played crucial roles as Allied codebreakers during World War 2. Bound by the Official Secrets Act, neither sister knew that the other was a spy until decades later. Now in their 90s, they reveal their hidden hands in planning D-Day, a…
40min