North Korea’s Madrid embassy intruder contacted FBI, decide says

North Korea's embassy in MadridPicture copyright

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Police had been alerted after a lady jumped from an embassy window and screamed for assist

The chief of 10 intruders who raided North Korea’s embassy in Madrid final month contacted the FBI days later, a Spanish excessive court docket decide says.

Adrian Hong Chang, a Mexican citizen who lives within the US, contacted the US company after fleeing to the US through Lisbon, Decide José de la Mata stated.

The assailants interrogated an embassy official and tried to steer him – unsuccessfully – to defect, he added.

The group shackled, beat up and interrogated a number of employees inside.

In accordance with the decide’s edict, lifting the shroud of secrecy over the incident, Mr Hong Chang “contacted the FBI in New York 5 days after the assault, to provide them his model of what occurred there”.

It stays unclear why the embassy assault happened or why Mr Hong Chang contacted the FBI and never authorities in Spain. The opposite members of the group additionally fled.

The break-in on 22 February occurred simply days earlier than a key summit between US President Donald Trump and North Korean chief Kim Jong-un in Hanoi, Vietnam.

Within the edict quoted by Spanish media, investigative Justice of the Peace De la Mata named two different members of the break-in group: US citizen Sam Ryu and a South Korean, Woo Ran Lee.

Alleged dissident group

The decide stated that whereas holding embassy employees hostage for a number of hours the group stole a cell phone, computer systems, exhausting disks and USB pen drives.

Spanish TV channel La Sexta has launched a video purporting to point out the “dissident” group smashing portraits of North Korea’s communist leaders contained in the embassy. The supply of that video has not been clearly recognized.

Learn extra on North Korea:

The sorry destiny of diplomat defectors
What it’s prefer to vote in North Korea

One girl managed to flee, escaping by a second flooring window and screaming for assist. Involved neighbours rapidly referred to as the police.

However when officers arrived they had been greeted by Adrian Hong Chang, posing as a North Korean diplomat – he was sporting a jacket with a Kim Jong-un lapel badge. He informed the police that each one was effectively and nothing had occurred.

That night many of the group fled the embassy utilizing three North Korean diplomatic automobiles, the decide stated. Adrian Hong Chang and a few others left later through the again entrance utilizing one other car.

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The 2-storey embassy has a swimming pool and lies to the north-west of central Madrid

The break-in started at 16:34 (15:34 GMT) and many of the intruders fled at 21:40. They cut up up into 4 teams and headed to Portugal.

Mr Hong Chang had obtained entry by asking to see the embassy’s business attache, whom he claimed to have met beforehand to debate enterprise issues, the decide stated. His accomplices burst in as soon as he had obtained entry.

In his edict, the decide stated the intruders had interrogated the business attache and tried to steer him to defect. They left him tied up within the basement when he refused.

The decide stated the group had “recognized themselves as members of a human rights motion searching for to liberate North Korea”.

Who’s behind it?

Authorities have dismissed the concept that widespread criminals are behind the alleged assault. Sources near the investigation reportedly informed El País that the operation was deliberate completely, as if by a “army cell”.

And the attackers appeared to know what they had been searching for. Each Spain’s El País and El Confidencial dailies report that the Spanish authorities suspect US intelligence businesses and their allies might have been concerned within the assault.

Victims of the alleged assault have reportedly informed investigators the attackers spoke in Korean.

El País even experiences that two of the group have hyperlinks to the US Central Intelligence Company (CIA). The CIA declined to remark to the BBC.

Why would anybody assault the embassy?

Experiences say the attackers might have been searching for info on North Korea’s former ambassador to Madrid, Kim Hyok-chol, expelled from Spain in September 2017 over North Korea’s nuclear-testing programme.

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Kim Hyok-chol helped organise the Hanoi summit between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un

However Mr Kim is now serving as a key envoy in North Korean talks with the US, and helped organise the summit in Vietnam. He additionally travelled to Washington DC with Kim Jong-un’s right-hand man, Kim Yong-chol, in January.

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