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Secretary Who Spied for Soviets Gets Eight Yrs.

Associated Press

A Duesseldorf court today convicted a former secretary in the West German president’s office of treason after she admitted spying for her KGB boyfriend.

West Germany’s chief federal prosecutor’s office described the case of Margret Hoeke as “one of the most damaging cases of treason” in the nation’s history.

The State Superior Court sentenced the 51-year-old woman to eight years in prison. Her case was revealed in August, 1985, when a spy scandal involving 15 suspected Soviet Bloc agents was uncovered in Bonn.

During the trial, which began June 15, Hoeke admitted spying for a Soviet agent identified as Franz Becker over a period of 15 years.

Served Five Presidents

Hoeke, who worked for five West German presidents starting in 1959, testified during her trial that she grew up feeling unloved by her family. She said she was single and lonely when befriended by Becker in 1968.

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She acknowledged that she fell in love with Becker, whose whereabouts are unknown, and maintained a relationship with him until 1973.

Hoeke was found guilty of providing classified foreign policy and military information to the Soviets, including sensitive exchanges between President Reagan and West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl.

During the trial, prosecutor Joachim Lampe said Hoeke received a total of $18,333 plus jewelry and paid foreign vacations in exchange for spying.

The indictment against Hoeke said she used devices such as a miniature camera hidden in her lipstick and a hollowed-out hair brush to store material.

Prosecutors said she photographed and passed along information detailing “differences of opinion” within the NATO alliance. Other material she obtained for the Soviets dealt with West Germany’s civil defense, NATO maneuvers, and West German intelligence dossiers, the indictment said.

Fifteen suspected Soviet Bloc spies either were arrested or disappeared between August and December of 1985. Among those who escaped to the East Bloc was the West German counterintelligence officer in charge of tracking East German spies.


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