A Chinese national who has donated funds to UK MPs has been outed as a spy by MI5.
In a memo to MPs and Peers the UK’s Intelligence Service issued a security warning that a female Chinese national has been attempting to covertly influence British politics on behalf of China, The Sun first reported.
Christine Lee is believed to have been carrying out political interference activities on behalf of the United Front Work Department of the Chinese Communist Party.
The security memo said: “I am writing now to draw your attention to the attached Interference Alert issued by the Security Service, MI5, about the activities of an individual, Christine Lee, who has been engaged in political interference activities on behalf of the Chinese Communist Party, engaging with Members here at Parliament and associated political entities.”
“I should highlight the fact that Lee has facilitated financial donations to serving and aspiring Parliamentarians on behalf of foreign nationals based in Hong Kong and China,” the memo continues, noting that Lee has helped to organise donations to political parties, parliamentarians, inspiring politicians and political entities.
“This facilitation was done covertly to mask the origins of the payments. This is clearly unacceptable behaviour and steps are being taken to ensure it ceases.”
Lee is believed to have links to UK MPs from across the political spectrum. In 2017 an investigation by The Times found that Labour shadow minister Barry Gardiner had been handed £180,000 in staff costs from Lee’s law firm. At the time, no suggestion of impropriety was uncovered.
Lee is believed to still be in the UK. She has not been arrested but remains under investigation by security services according to The Sun.