German commandos arrest couple ‘spying for Russia’

Russian and German flags

Russia & Germany

By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | intelNews.org |
Members of an elite German commando unit have arrested a man and a woman, on suspicion of having spied for Russia for over two decades. A statement issued by the German prosecutor’s office does not name the couple, nor does it explicitly identify them as Russian spies. It says simply that they are “suspected of having worked in Germany over a long period of time for a foreign intelligence agency”. But an article in Germany’s leading newsmagazine, Der Spiegel, identifies the couple as “Andreas A.” and “Heidrun A.”, and claims that the two have spied for Russian intelligence since at least 1988. The newsmagazine reports that the suspected spies were caught separately in the towns of Balingen and Marburg, located in the states of Baden-Wuerttemberg and Hesse respectively. It also suggests that the two were apprehended by members of Germany’s GSG-9, the elite counter-terrorism and special operations unit of the German Federal Police, and that the woman was actually caught in the act of listening to a coded radio message. Both were found to be in possession of forged Austrian passports, as well as —apparently fake— birth certificates stating that they were born in Argentina (Andreas) and Peru (Heidrun). Following the Spiegel article, Germany’s Federal Prosecutor confirmed that two people had indeed been arrested on suspicion of espionage activities on behalf of a foreign country. If a Russian connection is established, it will be the first international espionage case linking Russia and Germany since the latter’s reunification in 1990. If they are followed by convictions, the arrests could constitute a much needed success story for the German intelligence community, whose reputation has lately been damaged by several unsavory media stories. In one recent example, the German government was forced to admit that classified blueprints of its spy agency’s new Berlin headquarters had gone missing. Construction for the state-of-the-art structure, which began in 2006, is expected to be completed in 2014, at the cost of 31.4 billion euros, making it Germany’s most expensive building. It is designed to serve as headquarters for 4,000 employees of the Bundesnachrichtendienst, or BND, the country’s primary foreign intelligence agency. But German newsmagazine Focus reported that the top-secret architectural plans for the building had “mysteriously disappeared” and had probably been stolen a year ago, without anyone at the government noticing their absence.

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2 Responses to German commandos arrest couple ‘spying for Russia’

  1. Kidd says:

    more fodder for a philip kerr novel with bernie gunther . philip weaves an informative tale from per war berlin, ww2 with all the main players (countries) mentioned. then post war in south america. back and forth in time with all the juicy bits one might not be aware. intrigue, history. no, i am receiving money to push him, but there is much about intel in all of his gunther books. and this andreas & heildrun would fit right in.

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