Poland arrests Chinese businessman suspected of spying

11 January, 2019, 16:58 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • 6 2018 shows a Huawei sign outside a store selling mobile phones in Beijing.- Despite being essentially barred from the critical US market Huawei surpassed Apple to become the world's number two smartphone maker in the

Poland's public TV channel TVP reports that the Chinese national is a sales director at Chinese telecoms firm Huawei's Polish branch. Huawei is facing increased spying accusations from the United States and its allies.

Poland has arrested a Chinese employee of Huawei and a Polish national involved in cyber business on allegations of spying, Polish media reported on Friday, deepening the controversy over Western criticism of the Chinese telecoms equipment maker. Both are accused of espionage.

Orange Polska spokesman Wojciech Jabczynski said "ABW officials had carried out items belonging to one of our employees on Tuesday". The homes of the men were also searched.

In an emailed statement sent earlier today, a Huawei spokesperson told us: "Huawei is aware of the situation, and we are looking into it".

The firm's chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, was arrested in Canada in December over allegations of breaking of USA sanctions on Iran.

Maciej Wasik, deputy head of Poland's special service, said that the operation that resulted in the arrest of the two suspects had been underway for a long time and was planned with care.

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The pair are set to remain in custody for at least three months and apparently face up to ten years in prison.

The Polish suspect in the case, Piotr D., was an officer in the Internal Security Agency until 2011, according to TVP Info, which says he was an adviser to the head of the special service who also had expertise about the network Poland's government uses to share sensitive information.

He worked at Orange, a company that worked with Huawei to roll out next-generation 5G mobile networks in Poland, the BBC reported.

"We have no comment for the time being".

In December, a Czech cyber-security agency warned against using the software and hardware of Huawei and fellow Chinese company ZTE, saying they posed a threat to state security. "Huawei complies with all applicable laws and regulations in the countries where it operates, and we require every employee to abide by the laws and regulations in the countries where they are based", it added.

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