Chinese Huawei employee, Polish former intel officer, arrested in Poland for espionage

A Chinese manager at tech giant Huawei was arrested in Poland and charged with espionage on behalf of China

If convicted, the men could face up to 10 years in prison.

The two men were arrested Tuesday, according to Poland's Internal Security Agency.

An official at the Chinese Embassy in Warsaw says China attaches "great importance to the detention" of a Chinese citizen in Poland who has been detained and charged with espionage and that a representative of the embassy has met with officials at Poland's Foreign Ministry to discuss the case.

A Chinese businessman and a Pole have been arrested on suspicion of espionage in Poland. The company said it abides by applicable laws wherever it operates and expects employees to do the same.

Geopolitical tensions over Huawei intensified after its chief financial officer, who is the daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei, was arrested December 1 in Canada in connection with USA accusations that the company violated restrictions on sales of American technology to Iran.

Poland's counterintelligence agency searched the local Huawei office and the home of the Chinese national, Poland's state-owned broadcaster reported Friday.

Europe should be "worried" about Huawei and other Chinese companies, given the mandatory cooperation they have to maintain with Chinese intelligence services, European Commission Vice-President for Digital Single Market Andrus Ansip said on Friday (7 December).

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United States intelligence agencies allege that Huawei is linked to China's government and that "backdoors" built into its technology could be exploited by government spy agencies. Last year, Huawei helped Orange Polska to roll out its next-generation 5G mobile networks in the country.

Zaryn identified him as Weijing W and the Polish suspect as Piotr D.

Both people "carried out espionage activities against Poland", a Polish government official told the AP.

Reports have shown that the Chinese technology giant circumvented sanctions imposed on Iran and North Korea by providing them with telecommunications equipment that can be used to spy on their populations, otherwise known as "dual use technologies".

Some European countries have followed the US and began looking into whether using Huawei's technology could expose the country to China.

Norway's comments come at a time in the country is seeking to stamp out vulnerabilities in its telecoms networks. Orange Polska's spokesman Wojciech Jabczynski declined to comment on Huawei cooperation while confirming that the Warsaw-based company handed over an employee's belongings to the Polish authorities on Tuesday.

Britain's largest mobile provider BT said last month that it would remove Huawei equipment from its cellular network after the foreign intelligence service called the company a security risk. She is out on bail in Canada awaiting extradition proceedings.

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