TAIPEI - Taiwan has arrested a Chinese tourist on charges of gathering military intelligence for Beijing, a newspaper said Tuesday.
Ma Zhongfei, the manager of a Chinese science and technology company, was arrested Monday when he walked into the Recruit Centre of National Armed Forces on the Keelung Road in Taipei and took photos inside the building, the Liberty Times reported.
As the centre is a military establishment, he was arrested and handed over to the military police for questioning. Under Taiwanese law, “illegal entry of military facility” carries a maximum one-year jail term.
The newspaper said Ma is visiting the country at the invitation of a Taiwan company, without saying if he came alone or as part of a Chinese delegation.
This is the first case of Taiwan’s catching a “Chinese spy” since Taipei opened its door to Chinese tour groups on in July 2008.
Ma’s arrest came a day after President Ma Ying-jeou called Taiwan-China ties as at their best point in 60 years. Ma has been pushing for cross-strait peace since he took office in May 2008.