In 1969, the Mayorovs had a second daughter, Alexandra. Ladislav Markonis owned a small export-import firm that traded with the United States. This was a good reason to move to America.
The couple went to the nearest deserted beach to discuss important issues in nature, without prying ears. And there they noticed that they were being followed. Comparing several moments when an unknown person tried to enter their garage, when a suspicious person was spinning near the hiding place, they realized that the clouds began to thicken over them. It was decided to urgently leave Argentina. But they did not have time: on October 9, 1970, the Mayorovs, together with their daughters, were arrested by Argentine intelligence.
Unfortunately, all the evidence could not be destroyed. During a search of the Wests, they found a plan indicating the location of the hiding place. Later, two Soviet diplomats will be detained there, who will then be expelled from the country.
So the Center learned about the failure of illegal immigrants.
Interrogations of scouts went on for a long 9 months. They threatened to torture the children. But the Mayorovs did not break down. They insisted that it was already known that their work was directed exclusively against the Americans. The Vestas sought such images of transfer to the United States, from where they believed it would be easier for them to escape.
And this plan worked.
Soon, CIA officers joined the interrogations, and in July 1971, the prisoners were transported to the States and settled in a villa in the suburbs of Washington under the protection of four CIA agents.
For six months, the Mayorovs lived in a secret CIA villa. They studied the working hours and habits of their guards, learned by heart a map of Washington and the address of the Soviet embassy. Gradually, the attention of the guards to them weakened: they were even allowed short walks.
January 7, 1972 In the vicinity of Washington, an ordinary couple (dad, mother and two girls) went for a walk. On one of the streets, the couple separated. Mom and children took a taxi to the shopping center, and there, changing the car, drove straight to the Soviet embassy. My father arrived at the embassy an hour later.
The Mayorovs immediately contacted the Center and said that a mole had wound up among the Soviet intelligence officers, who had betrayed them.
On February 2, the whole family flew to Moscow. It would seem that all the suffering is over. But it was not there.
In Moscow, the question immediately arose of how they were discovered. At that time, they did not know about Gordievsky yet. The KGB leadership decided that the Mayorovs themselves provoked a mistake that allowed them to be discovered. And along with this mistake, the game with the Americans no longer looked like a game of salvation, but like selling information for the sake of one’s own life.
Soviet intelligence and counterintelligence conducted an investigation, and did not find a traitor in their ranks. Therefore, the leadership of the KGB decided that the failure was the fault of the Mayorovs themselves.
Former illegal immigrants were expelled from the party, deprived of all awards and exiled to permanent residence in Kaluga, without the right to hold public office. For a long 20 years, the Mayorovs were forgotten.
All 20 years, Vadim and Larisa tried to figure out what caused their failure.
Once in 1990, Vadim saw in Komsomolskaya Pravda an interview with a traitor-defector Oleg Gordievsky. He looked at the photo and was stunned: it was from the most connected person from the Center, who met them in Copenhagen. The couple wrote a letter to the KGB, in which they pointed to Gordievsky as a traitor.
Soon they were invited for an interview. Two weeks after this meeting, all restrictions for Larisa and Vadim were removed, the awards were returned, they were reinstated in rank, and they returned to Moscow.
Today, the Mayorovs are retired and live in a forest house in the Smolensk region.