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Norwegian Spy Suspect Blames Sex Blackmail

February 25, 1985|Associated Press

OSLO — Norway's chief prosecutor said today that former diplomat Arne Treholt told of being sexually blackmailed into providing nuclear and other military secrets from Norway and NATO to agents of the Soviet Union.

Treholt told interrogators that he attended a private party in Moscow in 1975 that turned into an "orgy," prosecutor Lars Qvigstad said, and later he was confronted with photographs by a Soviet agent who quizzed him on his access to secret material.

In his first presentation in the opening sessions of Treholt's espionage trial today, Qvigstad outlined a long series of contacts after 1975 between Treholt and Soviet agents. He said many details of Treholt's work for the Soviet Union were too sensitive to be disclosed in open court.

Treholt was accused of providing the Soviets with an array of secrets, including NATO nuclear strategies.

Qvigstad described exchanges of documents in Oslo and New York restaurants, in the delegates' lounge and library of the United Nations, and in a jogging park near the Norwegian capital.

Earlier, Treholt, a former Foreign Ministry spokesman, stood in the courtroom dock and denied that he had violated Norwegian security laws.

Treholt is accused of giving Soviet agents details of Norwegian and North Atlantic Treaty Organization air defense and warning systems, as well as reports on the defense of Norway's remote border with the Soviet Union.

He also is accused of revealing Western intelligence on the Middle East and Afghanistan to Iraq and the Soviets, and disclosing the contents of talks with Henry Kissinger, Helmut Schmidt and other ranking Western officials in a 10-year espionage career.

The charges, made public for the first time today, were included in a 15-page list read at the opening of Treholt's trial before a panel of judges.

The personable and polished Treholt, 42, once considered one of the country's fastest rising diplomats, has been in custody since his arrest at Oslo's airport on Jan. 20, 1984. Police said he was preparing to leave Norway with 66 NATO and other documents he planned to give Soviet agents in Vienna.

He faces a possible sentence of up to 20 years in prison. The trial is expected to last at least five weeks.

Norwegian newspapers have quoted him as saying in a letter smuggled out of prison that he was not a spy but an "unorthodox diplomat" trying to improve Soviet understanding of Norwegian national interests.

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