Tags: Germany | US | Spying

Report: Germany Arrests Suspected Double Agent Spying for US

Friday, 04 Jul 2014 01:55 PM

 

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
An employee of Germany's BND foreign intelligence agency has been arrested on suspicion of spying for the United States, two lawmakers with knowledge of the affair told Reuters on Friday.

The German Federal Prosecutor's office said in a statement that a 31-year-old man had been arrested on suspicion of being a foreign spy, but it gave no further details. Investigations were continuing, it said.

The case risks further straining ties with Washington, which were damaged by revelations last year of mass surveillance of German citizens by the U.S. National Security Agency, including the monitoring of Chancellor Angela Merkel's mobile phone.

The man, who is German, has admitted passing to an American contact details about a special German parliamentary committee set up to investigate the spying revelations made by former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, the politicians said.

Both lawmakers are members of the nine-person parliamentary control committee, whose meetings are confidential, and which is in charge of monitoring the work of German intelligence agencies.

The parliamentary committee investigating the NSA affair also holds some confidential meetings.

The German Foreign Ministry said in a statement that it had invited the U.S. ambassador to come for talks regarding the matter, and asked him to help deliver a swift explanation.

"This was a man who had no direct contact with the investigative committee ... He was not a top agent," said one of the members of parliament, who spoke on condition of anonymity. The suspect had offered his services to the United States voluntarily, the source said.

Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert said: "We don't take the matter of spying for foreign intelligence agencies lightly."

When asked whether Merkel had discussed the issue with President Barack Obama during a phone conversation on Thursday night, he merely said they had talked about foreign affairs.

The U.S. embassy in Berlin, the State Department in Washington and the White House all declined to comment.

Germany is particularly sensitive about surveillance because of abuses by the Stasi secret police in communist East Germany and by the Nazis. After the Snowden revelations, Berlin demanded that Washington agree to a "no-spy agreement" with its close ally, but the United States has been unwilling.

Germany's Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper and the broadcasters WDR and NDR reported that the alleged spy was first detained on suspicion of contacting Russian intelligence agents. He then admitted he had worked with Americans.

Bild newspaper said in an advance copy of an article to be published on Saturday that the man had worked for two years as a double agent and had stolen 218 confidential documents.

He sold the documents, three of which related to the work of the committee in the Bundestag, for 25,000 euros ($34,100), Bild said, citing security sources.

Opposition lawmakers called for diplomatic consequences if the allegations should prove true.

The head of parliament's committee investigating the NSA affair, Patrick Sensburg, said its members had long feared they might be targeted by foreign intelligence agents and had taken special measures. ($1 = 0.7331 Euros)

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

North Korea Denounces Obama for Shutting Down Its Internet

Friday, 26 Dec 2014 23:49 PM

North Korea called President Barack Obama a monkey and blamed the U.S. on Saturday for shutting down its Internet amid . . .

Obama Contradicts Polls, Says Racial Divisions Reduced

Friday, 26 Dec 2014 19:37 PM

The nation is less racially divided today than it was six years ago, President Barack Obama says. In an excerpt from a 4 . . .

Foundation's Scott Neil: Injured Green Berets Need Your Help

Friday, 26 Dec 2014 16:42 PM

A group of dedicated military veterans is asking for help in their quest to provide financial assistance to Green Berets . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved