Denmark: Intelligence chief in custody

Head of its foreign intelligence service Denmark, Lars Fitzen, is in custody for being involved in a “high-secret” information leak case, which aired on Public Broadcasting DR on Monday.

Two Danish intelligence services have been charged with leaking top-secret information since the arrest of four current and former employees in December, a case that threatens to tarnish the country’s reputation abroad.

Finsen is the only one in custody while the investigation continues. The news, broadcast by DR and other Danish media, appeared in court on Monday when the ban on publishing the case was lifted.

“I want the charges to be dropped and I admit my innocence.”

The attorney general’s office declined to comment on the case, and Reuters was unable to immediately contact Finsen or his attorney.

The case, which was leaked by authorities, is being investigated on camera, which means that the allegations and the nature of the leaked information have not been made public.

All four intelligence officials have been accused of violating an article in the Penal Code that includes treason, the Danish Security and Intelligence Service (PET) told Reuters on Monday.

He said that if highly classified information was transferred to Denmark or to EU or NATO member states it could cause “serious or very serious damage”.

Such an offense is punishable by a maximum of 12 years in prison.

According to a public broadcaster citing unnamed sources, the case has been leaked to the Danish media.

In DR 2020, DR shared source data from the Danish Defense Intelligence Service cable information networks with the US National Security Agency, which means that the NSA can access the personal data and private conversations of Danish citizens.

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Last year, several Danish media outlets published reports based on confidential information about the activities of the country’s secret services.

In a separate case, Finsen and four intelligence officials were acquitted in August 2020 after an independent investigative board charged him with gross misconduct. The allegations were dismissed by the commission of inquiry last month and the suspension lifted.

Source: ΑΠΕ – ΜΠΕ, Reuters

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