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back to article Ex-MI6 officer admits attempt to sell secrets

A former MI6 officer faces jail after he pleaded guilty this morning to two breaches of the Official Secrets Act. Mr Justice Bean told Daniel Houghton, of Hoxton, that a prison sentence was inevitable, PA reports. In an apparent plea deal, Houghton denied a third charge, of theft, which was accepted by the prosecution. The 25- …

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Lucky he didn't get charged with hacking

The leaky British security system continues - remember Blunt, Philby, MacLean, Burgess, Cairncross, Straight, Rothschild, Liddell, Daly, etc?

If this luckless guy did actually purloin files you would have thought the government would check these characters when they leave their offices. Guess they couldn't prove he actually hacked a computer.

Maybe the government should pay them a living wage and remove the temptation for extra income.

At least he has the opportunity to write his memoirs so he has some money when he gets out of jail!

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Oh, another one!

Is there a person in London who is not a spy?

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Big Brother

Welcome

Welcome to air strip one, try the fish.

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Unhappy

Probaly not.

I don't know why they've cancelled Anna Chapman's passport. If we must have spies, they may as well be highly shaggable.

I thought the Coalition had promised the public a voice on issues like this.

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Anonymous Coward

Dual citizenship?

I wonder if he will be stripped of his British citizenship and made persona non grata, given that he actually broke British law in trying to sell British secrets, something which Anna Chapman is not known to have done.

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Probably not

Given his name it would seem likely he is British by birth and Dutch by parentage/ancestry i.e. born here with at least one British parent. If he's born here to a British citizen I'd think you'd have a bit of a problem stripping the citizenship.

I'm a dual national born in the UK to British nationals (i.e. not naturalised citizens), best of luck trying to strip my citizenship if I did something similar and the same doubtless applies to him. I *think* you can only strip it from the naturalised types - it's not a political free-for-all.

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Anonymous Coward

Terrorists, a national security threat, my arse!

As they tell you in almost all security seminars, the biggest threat is on the inside. Just 'cos you may have been full of ideals when you first started in a role, doesn't mean you still will be after many years. Same boring job, year after year?The promise of topping up that pension for what is after all, just words on a page? Obviously too tempting for some.

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Years?

"Just 'cos you may have been full of ideals when you first started in a role, doesn't mean you still will be after many years."

So change jobs! Anyway, in this case, he's 25 years old, only started there in 2007 and got caught in 2009.

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Dutch?

WTF was he doing trying to sell secrets to the *Dutch*?

I know we did have a few wars with them, but that was a fair while ago.

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Paris Hilton

(untilted)

So MI5 enticed him with nearly a million quid and he caved in - or was he already doing it before they started?

We don't want to be giving away state secrets but if he was active and a threat, wouldn't the 900k have been better spent on employing (say) 2 people full time at 45k/yr to watch and feed him duff info for 10 years? (and more fun for MI5)

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900K not spent

I'd go out on a limb here and suggest that they took the 900K back when they arrested him and therefore, they only lent him the money for a couple of minutes and it was not spent. Also, there would be no point observing him trying to sell secrets to the Dutch because, as an ally, they promptly told MI5 as soon as he contacted them - that's what prompted the MI5 sting.

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FAIL

err, no

You don't think MI5 actually handed him a case with £900K, and let him keep it when he was arrested minutes later do you?

And they didn't "entice him... and he caved in". The Dutch spooks tipped them off, after he contacted them offering to sell information.

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Pint

...claiming he had been "directed by voices".

saying "ask for loads of money, ask for loads of money, ask for..."

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re:Voices

They'll be the same voices that'll soon be telling him to pick up the soap.

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WTF?

Hanging

They should hang the ba5tard for treason.

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Paris Hilton

Deeply Dumb

Me? I would have gone out in a laundry basket. The spooks would never prosecute if they had lost the money.

Paris because she's much smarter than that.

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FAIL

wow

This guy looks like your regular WoW adict? who are they hiring nowadays?

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Anonymous Coward

Pay peanuts...

...get monkeys. The job ads I saw a few years ago had salaries for IT positions at MI6 starting at 19K, for a job located in central London. At the time, my Russian wife commented "This is why our guys can buy them so easily".

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Thumb Up

Thank god he's not from the NorthEast.

Katherine Gun - Durham Uni

Richard Tomlinson - Barnard Castle School

David Shayler - Middlesbrough city centre McDonalds.

Thank god this one's from somewhere else, it was starting to get embarassing.

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Anonymous Coward

Top Secret Papers?

Must be the amount spent by our brave shiny-bottomed beaurocrats on extra-soft triple ply toilet paper. Anything important, the Yanks, Israelis, Russkies etc already have.

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Anonymous Coward

Give Computer Science a break!

Actually, he matriculated with a diploma in Graphic Design from Exeter College, Degree in Computer Interactive Systems from Birmingham. Seems to lack the prerequisites to study analytic/mathematical sciences.

I wonder what his role was at SIS? Website analysis perhaps?

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FAIL

In the words of Eric Schmidt

"If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place"

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