Huawei employee arrested in Poland over spying charges

Hmmm: Huawei exec arrested for espionage in Poland

Polish security arrests Huawei employee on spying charges

On Friday, Poland arrested a Chinese Huawei employee on spying allegations, but a spokesman for Polish security services said the allegations relate to the individual's actions and are not directly related to the company.

Poland's TVP Info reported that ABW agents searched both Orange and Huawei's offices on Tuesday, having received court approval last week.

There has been no public evidence that Huawei's equipment has been used for spying and the firm has repeatedly denied the claims, but several western countries have restricted Huawei's access to their markets and have pressured Canada to do the same.

Countries like the United States, Australia and Japan have blocked Huawei from building their next-generation, super-fast 5G internet networks.

It has also become involved in the US-China trade dispute after the arrest last month of chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou.

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Huawei, founded by Ren Zhengfei-a former officer at China's People's Liberation Army-has been cited as a security risk in intelligence circles due to having close ties to the Chinese communist regime.

A Huawei spokesman has said the company is aware of the arrest, but has made no further comment.

The Huawei logo displayed at the main office of Chinese tech giant Huawei in Warsaw, Poland, on Friday, Jan. 11, 2019. If convicted, the pair could face up to 10 years imprisonment.

The Canadian government previous year launched a new security review of Huawei's 5G technology, which at least two major Canadian carriers have said they plan to test in small-scale pilots. However, the person is said to be a former high-ranking official at Poland's internal security agency.

"One thing is clear: this is another nail in the coffin of Huawei's European ambitions", said Thorsten Benner, director of the Global Public Policy Institute, a think tank.

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China is highly concerned over the issue, the press office at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

The company said it "complies with all applicable laws and regulations in the countries where it operates, and we require every employee to abide by the laws and regulations in the countries where they are based".

A high ranking Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou was also arrested by Canadian authorities in December 2018, at the request of the USA authorities.

Authorities also arrested a former Polish government official on similar charges. The company's chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, was detained in Canada in December and faces charges that she violated USA trade sanctions.

Telenor is now testing 5G networks with the use of Chinese equipment supplied by Huawei, but with Friday's arrests, pressure will only mount on the firm, who sought to substantiate their presence on the continent with the establishment of an European Union headquarters in Brussels in 2018.

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