At The UK Embassy In Berlin, Germany Detains Suspected Spying For Russia

BERLIN — Officials announced Wednesday that a British citizen working at the British Embassy in Berlin was detained on suspicion of spying for Russia.

According to federal prosecutors, the guy was apprehended on Tuesday in the city of Potsdam, southwest of Berlin, following joint investigations by German and British police. He was only named David S. due to German privacy regulations.

Prosecutors said he has been suspected of spying for Russia’s intelligence service since November. According to the prosecution’s statement, he worked as a local hire at the British Embassy in Berlin before his detention and reportedly passed on materials he obtained at work to the Russians.

It’s doubtful that the suspect possessed diplomatic immunity because he would have been removed from the nation rather than arrested in such a scenario.

When contacted by phone later on Wednesday, the federal prosecutor’s office said it couldn’t comment on the matter because of the ongoing investigation and the man’s right to privacy.

Germany’s foreign minister stated that the government is keeping a close eye on the situation.

Heiko Maas told reporters in Berlin, “We take the information that the detained person’s espionage operation was carried out on behalf of a Russian intelligence organization extremely seriously.”

“Spying on a close partner on German soil is completely wrong, and we stand fully with our British allies,” he added. “We’ll be keeping a close eye on the federal prosecutors’ ongoing investigations.” We shall also help them when it is desirable, required, and possible.”

According to the Interfax news agency, the Russian Embassy in Berlin declined to comment on the arrest on Wednesday. The embassy’s spokesperson told Interfax that the embassy “currently does not have any official information from the German side on this subject.”

The British government said only that “an individual who was hired to work for the government was detained yesterday by German authorities.”

The statement continued, “It would not be proper to speak further because there is an ongoing police investigation.”

“The individual was detained in the Berlin region on suspicion of committing charges connected to being engaged in ‘Intelligence Agent activity,’” the Metropolitan Police said in a separate statement.

According to the Met statement, “Primacy for the investigation remains with German authorities,” and “officers from the Counter Terrorism Command continue to engage with German counterparts as the investigation proceeds.”

The Metropolitan Police Service’s Counter Terrorism Command is in charge of looking into suspected violations of the Official Secrets Act.

According to German authorities, the suspect got an undisclosed sum of money in exchange for his suspected spying operations. Investigators investigated his home and workplace, according to the statement.

On Wednesday, a federal court ordered the guy to be held in custody awaiting additional investigation.

Because Berlin was on the frontlines of the Cold War struggle between the Soviets in the East and the Americans and their western allies in the West, the city was nicknamed “the capital of spies.” On both sides of the divided city, intelligence operatives were active, and there were infamous cloak-and-dagger swaps of captured spies on the Glienicker Bridge when several spy agents were arrested.

However, espionage efforts in Berlin are said to have decreased after the collapse of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the unification of Germany a year later, and the end of the Cold War.

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