By Angela Charlton / AP
November 27, 2018

(PARIS) — An employee of the French Senate is in custody on suspicion of spying for North Korea.

A judicial official says that the man was detained Sunday in an investigation open since March into “collecting and delivering information to a foreign power susceptible to harming fundamental interests of the nation.” France’s domestic intelligence agency DGSI is leading the investigation.

A security official confirmed that the man in question is Senate employee Benoit Quennedey, and that he is suspected of spying for North Korea.

Both officials were not authorized to be publicly named discussing the sensitive matter. The Senate would not comment.

Publishing house Delga says on its website that Quennedey traveled to the Koreas in his role as the head of the French-Korean Friendship Association, and wrote a book and essays about North Korea.

Contact us at editors@time.com.

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