|Occupation||Federal Security Service Lieutenant Inspector|
Ramesh Thorne is a Lieutenant Inspector in the Federal Security Service. In late 3304, he was assigned to investigate an incident involving administrative assistant robots being reprogrammed with surveillance software by the Mars Tribune. When his superiors ordered the investigation terminated after it drew the ire of the Tribune's owner, Kingsley Cordova, Thorne defied them and was promptly suspended.
15 NOV 3304
- The Federal Times has revealed a connection between the Cordova Group and the spy robots scandal. Chief Editor Lena Ravenhill wrote: "Ramesh Thorne's recent appeal elicited a response from an anonymous whistle-blower – a robotics engineer employed by the Achilles Corporation who helped design the robots at the heart of these events. The engineer has attested that she was blackmailed by Kingsley Cordova, owner of the Mars Tribune, into installing surveillance programs on robots belonging to well-known people in the Sol system. The accumulated data was relayed to the Cordova Group, which published it in The Mars Tribune." A spokesperson for the Achilles Corporation said: "The engineer has provided us with a 'kill switch' that remotely deletes the spy program she designed. This coreware update has now been transmitted to all PA912 model robots. We can therefore assure our customers that there is no longer any risk of their private information being misused."
08 NOV 3304
- Lieutenant Inspector Ramesh Thorne, who has been leading an investigation into The Mars Tribune, has been suspended from the Federal Security Service. A spokesperson for the FSS released the following statement: "We have suspended Lieutenant Inspector Thorne from active duty, effective immediately. His investigation is officially terminated." The announcement came less than an hour after Thorne made the following public appeal: "We have evidence that the admin robots fitted with surveillance programs are connected to exclusive stories obtained by The Mars Tribune. Since my superiors are unwilling to pursue this, I am appealing to anyone with relevant information to come forward. I can guarantee them immunity from prosecution." Many media including Lena Ravenhill, chief editor of The Federal Times, reacted with outrage to the news: "It's clear that someone in the FSS is feeling threatened, and that The Mars Tribune has used spy robots to feed the scandals it thrives on. We are highlighting Ramesh Thorne's appeal, as are many other newsfeeds taking a stand against corrupt journalism."
20 OCT 3304
- The Federal Security Service has targeted The Mars Tribune as part of its investigation into robots carrying concealed surveillance programs. Lieutenant Inspector Ramesh Thorne made this statement: "The personal robots of former congressman Morgan Unwin and actor Tomas Turai were found to contain surveillance programs. In recent weeks, both were the subject of incriminating articles published exclusively in The Mars Tribune. Public-relations guru Anya Blackriver, also the owner of a 'spy' robot, was recently exposed by the Tribune for concealing various scandals on behalf of her celebrity clients. In fact, all the owners of affected robots live in the Sol system, which is the focus of the Tribune's journalism. We are therefore interviewing Tribune staff to establish if they used these robots to gather private data in order to obtain material for exclusive stories." Legal representatives of the Cordova Group, the conglomerate that owns The Mars Tribune, have challenged the FSS for making 'libellous and baseless accusations'.
05 OCT 3304
- The Federal Security Service has discovered more administration robots fitted with secret surveillance programs. Lieutenant Inspector Ramesh Thorne informed the media: "Our investigation into Lloyd Hardacre's admin robot, which secretly recorded evidence of corporate fraud, has broadened significantly. Acting on reports of unusual behaviour, we have found five further robots containing hidden surveillance programs. In each case, the robot was a PA912 model, manufactured by the Achilles Corporation. The robots' owners are now helping us with our enquiries." Two of the five owners have been identified. Don Zhao is the CEO of Kuiper Mining Inc., while Anya Blackriver runs a public-relations consultancy with offices in Olympus Village, San Francisco, and Columbus station. A spokesperson for the Achilles Corporation gave this statement: "We are cooperating with the FSS investigation, and would like to reassure the public that our robots are as trustworthy as ever. This illegal surveillance has nothing whatsoever to do with the Achilles Corporation." Over the last decade, the Achilles Corporation has sold over 20 million robots throughout the Federation, including nearly 300,000 PA912 models.
28 SEP 3304
- The personal administration robot of business magnate Lloyd Hardacre, which recently revealed evidence of his criminal activity, has been found to contain a concealed surveillance program. Lieutenant Inspector Ramesh Thorne of the Federal Security Service made a statement to the media: "FSS technicians discovered a highly sophisticated surveillance program within the robot's coreware that was covertly copying certain types of data – namely anything illegal. A minor malfunction caused the robot to incorporate the data into a company presentation. Our working theory is that Mr. Hardacre was the target of an undercover spy operation, but not one coordinated by any legal authority. Clearly, someone harboured suspicions about Hardacre and was looking for proof. We are conducting interviews with his business associates and competitors." When asked about the robot, Lieutenant Inspector Thorne added: "The robot is manufactured by the Achilles Corporation, and is a relatively primitive machine, designed to coordinate information and perform administrative tasks. Such robots are incapable of independent behaviour, so this one must have been subjected to comprehensive reprogramming."
17 SEP 3304
- Business magnate Lloyd Hardacre has been arrested for corporate fraud after his personal administrative robot revealed incriminating evidence. The incident occurred at Burnell Station during the annual general meeting of Copernicus Shipping Ltd, an interplanetary haulage firm founded by Mr. Hardacre. One witness, a company shareholder, told reporters: "Halfway through Hardacre's financial presentation, we saw off-the-books logs that were very obviously illegal. Hardacre ordered the robot to stop, but it continued projecting data from its internal drives. Eventually he ran from the hall in panic." Lieutenant Inspector Ramesh Thorne of the Federal Security Service made this statement: "We have placed Mr. Hardacre in custody while we verify multiple instances of fraud and misuse of company funds. We are also investigating how his personal admin robot managed to obtain such information, and why it chose to make the data public at this time."