Married couple detained after discovery of espionage

2024-06-03 Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

China's national security agencies recently uncovered an espionage case involving the United Kingdom's Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) recruiting Chinese central government department employees to gather information, announced by the Ministry of State Security on Monday.

According to a post on the ministry's official WeChat account, the two people who were recruited by MI6 are a married couple who worked in important posts in central government departments before their arrest.

In 2015, a man surnamed Wang, the husband, applied to participate in a China-UK exchange program to study in the UK. After recognizing the sensitive position Wang held in China's central government department, MI6 quickly facilitated the approval of his application.

Upon his arrival in the UK, the intelligence agency arranged for personnel to provide Wang with special attention, inviting him to meals, social gatherings, and sightseeing tours to learn about his weaknesses and preferences.

After discovering Wang's strong desire for money, MI6 dispatched an agent to approach him under the guise of a fellow alumnus on campus, claiming to offer consulting part-time opportunities with high remuneration. Tempted by the financial incentives, Wang agreed to engage in paid consulting.

The UK side initially involved him in open research projects, gradually extending to core internal information about China's central government agencies, with payments significantly higher than typical consulting fees. Although Wang was somewhat cautious, he continued to provide "consulting" services to the UK side due to the substantial payment.

After a period, the UK side introduced MI6 personnel to reveal their true identity to Wang after assessments of the conditions, asking him to serve the UK government with promises of higher rewards and security guarantees.

Driven by the pursuit of benefits, Wang agreed to the UK side demands and completed the espionage procedures. MI6 provided Wang with professional espionage training, instructing him to return to China, go undercover and gather intelligence.

Wang's wife, surnamed Zhou, also worked in a crucial position. MI6 believed that they had successfully controlled Wang and repeatedly pressured him to involve his wife into the espionage actions. The intelligence agency also promised to offer him double remuneration.

Despite initial hesitations, Wang eventually succumbed to repeated persuasion, financial inducements and even threats from the UK side. Under Wang's influence, Zhou also agreed to gather intelligence for the UK side.

National security officers recently detained the couple after meticulous investigations and collecting solid evidence. The case is currently under further investigation, according to the ministry.

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