Polish trial begins in Chinese spy case linked to Huawei, Telecom News, ET Telecom
WARSAW: Spy trial involving former Polish secret service agent and ex-Huawei employee opens Tuesday in Warsaw court as some European states consider excluding Chinese group’s equipment from their 5G telecommunications networks .
Poland arrested the two men in January 2019 on suspicion of spying on behalf of China, which has intensified international debate on the potential security risks of using Huawei equipment in communications networks.
Huawei has repeatedly denied that its equipment could be used for spy purposes by authorities in Beijing, but the United States has pressured countries to ban it. In Europe, only Great Britain and Sweden have done so so far.
Polish prosecutors allege that Wang Weijing, 39, under the guise of being a Huawei executive, spent more than seven years spying for China trying to strengthen the company’s ability to influence the Polish government and ” enable it to (…). technological infrastructure, ”court documents show.
Wang, who has been in detention since his arrest, is also accused of recruiting a former Polish secret service agent who prosecutors say informed him of ways to influence the radio networks of the rescue and public security services. from the country.
Polish accused Piotr D. had worked for years at the highest levels of government and is accused of “presenting himself as a source of information” concerning public administration.
Both men deny any wrongdoing.
Prosecutors say the cybersecurity specialist, who requested that his last name not be disclosed under privacy rules, informed Wang of a surveillance system to prevent intruders from gaining access to classified information sent. via the fiber optic communication networks created by the Warsaw Military University.
Wang’s attorney, Bartlomiej Jankowski, said prosecutors had no evidence of espionage activity on the part of his client.
“There is no evidence of anything illegal,” he told Reuters.
Huawei, which fired Wang after his arrest but helped fund his legal fees, told Reuters in a statement last month that its operations “meet the highest standards of transparency and compliance with laws and regulations.”
The administration of then-US President Donald Trump had congratulated Poland on the arrests, with former Vice President Mike Pence saying in 2019 that they demonstrated Warsaw’s commitment to ensuring the telecommunications sector does not or “not compromised in a way that threatens our national security”.
At the time, Warsaw was seeking to convince the United States to increase its military presence in Poland, alarmed by the increasingly Russian assertion.
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki’s government last year proposed a bill that could lead to Huawei’s de facto exclusion from building 5G networks, but the proposal has yet to be discussed by parliament.
European mobile operators have long hesitated to start investing in 5G networks, which could support smart factories and self-driving cars, due to a lack of political clarity as to whether they should accede to US demands to exclude the main supplier of equipment to Huawei and other Chinese suppliers. .
Huawei said its exclusion from 5G would result in a loss of nearly 44 billion zlotys ($ 12 billion) to the Polish economy and a delay of a few years in the rollout of 5G.
He challenged Sweden’s ban on its equipment in 5G networks, where a verdict is awaited from a local court.
The Romanian government also approved a bill effectively banning China and Huawei from participating in the development of its 5G network in April, but it still needs the approval of the upper house of parliament, seen as a buffer.