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Bizarre Alleged Raid on N. Korean Embassy Revealed

Alleged ringleader is US resident
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 27, 2019 7:41 AM CDT
A North Korean embassy employee tells reporters not to take pictures of the diplomatic building in Madrid, Spain.   (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue, File)
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(Newser) – A Spanish judge lifted a secrecy order Tuesday, revealing details of a bizarre alleged raid on North Korea's embassy in Madrid. According to judge Jose de la Mata, who has been leading the investigation of the Feb. 22 incident, Adrian Hong Chang, a Mexican citizen who lives in the US, led a group of 10 people who attacked the embassy armed with machetes and fake guns, the New York Times reports. After Hong Chang posed as a businessman and asked to speak to economics official Yun Sok So, the gang, including a US citizen, stormed the embassy and held the seven people inside hostage for several hours, the judge says. He says the group interrogated Yun and left him tied up in the basement after he refused to defect, the BBC reports.

The investigation found that the wife of an embassy employee escaped by jumping out of a window, the AP reports. But after neighbors called police, officers who arrived at the embassy were greeted by Hong Chang, who assured them everything was fine. According to the judge, the group, who identified themselves as "members of a human rights movement seeking to liberate North Korea," stole computers and hard drives from the embassy. The judge says Hong Chang, who fled to the US the day after the raid, offered stolen "audiovisual materials" to the FBI. The dissident Cheollima Civil Defense group admitted involvement Tuesday, but said it was not an attack, reports Reuters. Officials say international arrest warrants have been issued for Hong Chang and one other suspect. (Read more North Korea stories.)

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