Germany Arrests Far-Right Lawmaker’s Aide on Suspicion of Spying for China

By John Mercury April 24, 2024

An aide to a German far-right European Parliament lawmaker has been arrested on suspicion of spying for China, Germany’s federal prosecutor’s office said Tuesday, the latest in a series of cases that have intensified concerns about foreign interference in European Union politics weeks before bloc-wide elections.

The arrest also comes a day after the British authorities announced they had charged two people, one of whom was a former parliamentary aide, with spying for China, although there was no indication the two cases were linked.

The German arrest took place on Monday in the eastern city of Dresden. Hours earlier the German authorities had arrested three people in the west of the country on suspicion of leaking technological data used in maritime propulsion and exporting a high-powered laser to China. It was not clear whether the two cases were linked.

The episodes underscored the oftentimes fraught relationship between European countries and China, a vastly important trading partner that has long been treated with suspicion.

Prosecutors said on Tuesday that Jian G., as he was identified in keeping with German privacy rules, had worked for a German member of the European Parliament since 2019.

Calling him an “employee of a Chinese secret service,” prosecutors accused Mr. G. of repeatedly passing along information about parliamentary deliberations and decisions to Chinese intelligence in January. Mr. G., a German citizen, also was accused of spying on Chinese opposition groups in Germany, according to a statement from the prosecutor’s office.


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