Arrest of British embassy worker in Germany draws attention to MI5 failure - Balkan Times

Arrest of British embassy worker in Germany draws attention to MI5 failure

The arrest of a British embassy worker in Germany on suspicion of selling secrets to Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) is a major embarrassment to the British Security Service (MI5), not least because the drama is unfolding at a delicate time in Anglo-Russian relations.

Arrest of British embassy worker in Germany draws attention to MI5 failure – The arrest of a British embassy worker in Germany on suspicion of selling secrets to Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) is a major embarrassment to the British Security Service (MI5), not least because the drama is unfolding at a delicate time in Anglo-Russian relations.

According to the German judiciary, the British national, identified as David S, was detained in Postdam on suspicion of working “for a foreign secret service”.

A German prosecutor said that David S was a “local employee” at the British Embassy in Berlin, implying that he is not a fully accredited diplomat.

German judicial authorities also claim the suspect had “forwarded documents obtained in the course of his professional activities to a representative of a Russian intelligence service”.

“In return for providing information, the accused received cash in a previously unknown amount”, the German judiciary alleges.

The UK’s Metropolitan Police provided more details by issuing a statement claiming that a 57-year-old man had been arrested “on suspicion of committing offenses relating to being engaged in ‘intelligence Agent Activity’ (under German law)”.

It is worth noting that the Metropolitan Police’s Counter Terrorism Command is tasked with investigating suspected breaches of the Official Secrets Act (1989) in collaboration with MI5.

The highly public disclosure of this case is unusual as MI5 rarely publicizes its counter-intelligence failures or successes for that matter.

In recent years there have been few (if any) cases where MI5 has publicly disclosed the existence of Russian or other foreign intelligence service spies inside the British government.

By contrast, MI5 and the broader British intelligence community were at great pains to publicize an alleged Russian assassination attempt on UK soil back in 2018, centered on a Russian military intelligence (GRU) plot to assassinate the double agent Sergei Skripal.

In recent years there have been few (if any) cases where MI5 has publicly disclosed the existence of Russian or other foreign intelligence service spies inside the British government.

By contrast, MI5 and the broader British intelligence community were at great pains to publicize an alleged Russian assassination attempt on UK soil back in 2018, centered on a Russian military intelligence (GRU) plot to assassinate the double agent Sergei Skripal.

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(The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect BalkanTimes editorial stance.)

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