Pole and Chinese Citizen Indicted in Warsaw for Spying

November 18, 2020 Updated: November 18, 2020

WARSAW—Polish authorities said on Wednesday a former secret service agent and a Chinese citizen who worked for a telecommunications company have been charged with spying for China.

Reuters previously reported on the allegations against an employee of Huawei and a former Polish domestic intelligence operative who were being investigated by the Warsaw government for suspected espionage.

An indictment was submitted on Tuesday to Warsaw District Court against the suspects, named as Piotr D. and Weijing W., a spokesman for the minister coordinating Poland’s special services said in a statement carried by state news agency PAP.

“They both carried out espionage activities to the detriment of the interests of the Republic of Poland,” it said.

Weijing W.’s lawyer told Reuters that he and his client had not seen all the evidence and that what they had seen did not provide any grounds for filing charges. Piotr D.’s lawyer did not respond to requests for comment. Huawei declined to comment.

Huawei fired Weijing W. in 2019 several days after Polish security personnel detained him, saying the matter had brought the company “into disrepute” and that his “alleged actions have no relation to the company.”

Piotr D. was a former agent of Poland’s Internal Security Service. He also worked on a project to protect fiber optic networks from intruders seeking classified information that ran from 2012–2015 at the Military University of Technology.

The United States has encouraged its allies not to use Huawei equipment when rolling out 5G networks, saying it can be used for spying. Huawei has denied the allegations.

Washington and Warsaw signed a joint declaration in 2019 that said suppliers of 5G network equipment should be rigorously evaluated for foreign government control. U.S. officials have pressed allies to exclude China from roles in 5G networks.