17:13 GMT +314 December 2018
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    Two men pose at the headquarters of the General Directorate for External Security (DGSE), France's external intelligence agency, in Paris on June 4, 2015

    Two French Ex-Spies Facing Trial After Reportedly 'Passing Secrets to China'

    © AFP 2018 / MARTIN BUREAU
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    Former French intelligence agents have been charged with passing state secrets to a foreign power in an act of "extreme gravity," France's Defense Ministry said in a statement.

    According to French Quotidien television program and Le Monde daily, the two now retired spies may have passed over intelligence to China, while still working for France’s DGSE agency, similar to Britain’s MI6 and the US' CIA.

    Separately, the wife of one of the accused pair is being prosecuted for "concealment of treasonable crimes," the judicial source said, giving no details on the other country the alleged double agents passed information to, or on how long they had collaborated with the foreign power.

    The three people were charged on December 22, two of the individuals have been held in custody ever since and are now being prosecuted for "delivering to a foreign power information that undermines the fundamental interests of the nation" and thus "compromising the secrecy of national defense," the source said. 

    READ MORE: The Story of Eli Cohen, the Israeli Superspy Who Almost Became Syria's President

    "These acts of extreme gravity have been detected by this service, which has brought these facts to the knowledge of the Paris prosecutor," the French Defense Ministry noted.

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    ex-intelligence agent, court case, state secret, intelligence agencies, treason, trial, intelligence, government, General Directorate for External Security (DGSE), China, France
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