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China Has Arrested Suspected CIA Spy

If true, would mark worst security breach in decades
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 1, 2012 12:29 PM CDT
China Has Arrested Suspected CIA Spy
People line up to view the embalmed body of the late Chinese leader Mao Zedong at his mausoleum in Beijing, China, Tuesday, May 1, 2012.   (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)

(Newser) – China has reportedly nabbed a security official insiders say has been spying for years on the CIA's behalf. Insiders say the CIA recruited the alleged spy—an aide to a security vice-minister—several years ago, and he has been offering "political, economic, and strategic intelligence" in exchange for hundreds of thousands of dollars. "The destruction has been massive," a source says.

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The arrest occurred between January and March, according to a source, but neither US nor Chinese officials have discussed it publicly, fearing heightened diplomatic tensions. If the claims are accurate, the security breach would be the biggest known US-China spying incident since 1985, Reuters reports. At that time, a Chinese intelligence official defected to the US, where he told officials that a retired CIA analyst was spying for Beijing. (Read more China stories.)

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