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A British man working at the UK embassy in Berlin has been arrested on suspicion of passing information to the Russian intelligence services, German prosecutors said on Wednesday.
The 57-year-old UK national, named only as David S, was arrested on Tuesday in Potsdam, a town to the south-west of Berlin, following a joint investigation by German and British authorities.
The German federal prosecutor’s office said he was a local employee, rather than a diplomat, and was suspected of having worked for “foreign agents” since November.
“On at least one occasion, he passed on documents he had obtained in the course of his professional activities to a representative of a Russian intelligence service,” Germany’s chief federal prosecutor’s office said in a statement. “The accused received cash in an as yet unknown amount in return for his transmission of information.”
The suspect’s apartment and workplace have been searched and he is facing charges relating to engagement in “intelligence agent activity” under German law.
In a statement, the Metropolitan Police’s counter-terrorism command said that primacy for the investigation remains with German authorities but that British officers will “liaise with German counterparts as the investigation continues”.
The Met’s counter terrorism command is responsible for investigating allegations relating to alleged breaches of the Official Secrets Act.
The suspect is due to be brought before an investigating judge on Wednesday.