A businessman accused of selling Australian defense and security secrets to foreign spies manipulated published source documents and cooperated with ASIO and police, his lawyer told a Sydney court. rice field.
- Alexander Sergo was arrested at his Bondi home on Friday
- his lawyers claim he worked primarily with publicly available material
- Two foreign intelligence officers allegedly offered him money to obtain information on Australia’s national security.
Alexander Csergo has been in custody since being arrested at his Bondi home on Friday.
Australian Federal Police (AFP) Individual claiming to be from think tank claims to have contacted 55-year-old man I arranged for him to meet with two representatives via social media while he was abroad.
Two people, known to Mr Sergo as ‘Ken’ and ‘Evelyn’, are said to have offered to pay for information on Australia’s defense, economic and national security arrangements, as well as matters relating to other countries.
Csergo allegedly prepared a report and received money from this information.
Attorney Bernard Collaery told the Downing Center District Court today that the various documents his client used were “largely from open source documents.”
He said both ASIO and AFP correctly processed messages on “his laptop” and WeChat, confirming that all work was from publicly available materials.
Collaery said Csergo was an experienced and successful businessman who understood how to do business in China.
However, he tried to suggest that the police’s statement of the alleged facts had “something sinister” about “Ken” and “Evelyn”.
“Australia is a dictatorship, as Australian business people know it,” Corellay said in his bail application.
“All roads lead to the state. If someone approaches you in a bar, beware. Businessmen beware.”
Collaery detailed his client’s work history, including roles at Shanghai Volkswagen and China’s largest data provider to the US.
He said clients were encouraged and even praised for working with the Chinese, while at the same time the federal government enacted the Foreign Interference Act, raising questions about how individuals can do business in China. .
“How do you provide a publicly available source and not be seen as doing something sinister?” he said.
Defense attorneys challenged AFP’s release of media releases containing footage of the arrests that referred to espionage.
“What’s being beaten in Canberra is the drum that the police are coming to the state,” said Corellary.
Mr Sergo, heard by the court, returned to Australia after a long COVID lockdown in Shanghai and hopes to return when it’s safe, and was supported in court by his mother and brother.
Corellay also expressed concern that his client was being held in a lighted cell “day and night” after being classified as a high-risk prisoner.
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-04-17/sydney-businessman-alexander-csergo-accused-foreign-interference/102230648 Sydney businessman Alexander Sergo accused of foreign interference, worked on ‘open source documents’, lawyer says