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Spy betrayal, there might be more

Canada's spy chief says federal security agencies have tightened procedures following a headline-grabbing espionage scandal.

But Canadian Security Intelligence Service director Dick Fadden says he can't guarantee that Sub-Lt. Jeffrey Delisle will be the last insider to betray sensitive secrets.

"This is one case that we caught. I suspect there will be others over time, both here and within our allies," Fadden told a Senate committee Monday.

Delisle, 41, was sentenced last week to 20 years in prison after pleading guilty to handing classified material to Russia in exchange for cash for more than four years.

"Do I think that this is catastrophic? No, it's not," Fadden said. "Is it something to sort of say, 'Oh, it happened, it'll go away?'

"Neither, it's somewhere in the middle."

Based most recently at an intelligence centre in Halifax, Delisle had access to information shared by the so-called Five Eyes allies, Canada, Britain, the United States, Australia and New Zealand. Delisle used floppy discs and USB drives to smuggle the closely held data out of the facility.

"I think what saves us, if that's the right word, in these instances with our allies is that every single one of them has been in the same situation before," Fadden said Monday. "Having said this, I think there's a consensus amongst ourselves and our close allies that this has been to some degree the straw that broke the camel's back.

The Canadian Press


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