However his Colombian-born wife Rosario, who has also been charged in the affair, is likely to benefit from the plea- bargaining deal. She has been appealing for a non-custodial sentence to allow her to take care of the couple's young son. The officials said co-operation by Ames would help the CIA and the FBI to assess the damage to national security, and would avoid a costly trial that could embarrass the CIA and disclose secrets. Prosecutors allege that Ames received more than dollars 2.5m ( pounds 1.6m) from his Moscow paymasters.
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WASHINGTON (Reuter) - The former CIA agent, Aldrich Ames, faces life imprisonment for selling secrets to the Soviet Union and then Russia, despite a tentative agreement to admit his guilt and co-operate with investigators. US officials said there could be no leniency for Ames in what is regarded as one of the most damaging spy cases in US history.