Indian Agent Sentenced for Spying on Sikhs in Germany

Germany News: Prison sentence for man from India in Koblenz espionage case.
In the Koblenz, Germany espionage case, an accused man from India has been sentenced to a prison term of nine months because of secret service agent activity.
Ranjit S. had procured information about Sikhs living in Germany and passed the information on to an employee of the Consulate General of India in Frankfurt, said the first Criminal Division of the High Court on Monday.
The 45-year-old had been aware that his contact man worked for a secret Indian domestic intelligence service, most likely the Intelligence Bureau (IB). “The defendant acted intentionally. We can not tell of any evidence of coercion” said the presiding judge.
The defender had seen it differently and called for an acquittal. In his plea, he stated that his client had been in a pressure situation and was afraid for his family in India. “Contrary to any defense of the accused, there is no indication he was under pressure”, however, said the presiding judge. The accused was “certainly not the classic agent, such as we know from the corresponding films.”
The federal prosecutor had called for one year and three months imprisonment. Both prosecution and defense did not want to even comment on a possible revision on Monday.
The monitored people were mainly members of Sikh organisations according to the presiding judge. The multiple convict Ranjit S. was able to draw on an extensive network of Indians resident in Germany in his search for information. He had such a network due to his previous activities as smuggling. No detectable loss was incurred by the people who the defendant collected information upon.
The investigators discovered the use of telephone monitoring however the court was unable to conduct examination of the consulate employee.
The court stressed that the punishment for Ranjit S. could not be placed on probation. He was a failed asylum seeker who had entered Germany with a fake passport in 2002 and most recently lived in Ludwigshafen.

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