Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Standoff Ends as Bonn Allows E. German Spy Suspect to Leave

July 21, 1986|Associated Press

BONN — An economist suspected of spying for the Communists left for East Germany today, ending a six-day standoff over an on-again off-again defection, after West Germany dropped an inquiry into his activities and revoked an arrest warrant.

Herbert Meissner, 59, asked to go back to East Germany and was allowed to return, said Ludwig Rehlinger, the No. 3 official in the Intra-German Relations Ministry.

Meissner's departure ended the diplomatic showdown that began when he fled to the East German mission in Bonn last Tuesday while West German authorities sought his arrest on espionage charges.

Meissner is the deputy chairman of the East German Academy of Sciences in East Berlin.

Chief Federal Prosecutor Kurt Rebmann said last week that Meissner had admitted to spying in West Germany since at least 1980.

Meissner said last week that he fled to the East German mission after police kidnaped him in West Berlin, drugged him and forced him to sign a defector's statement.

The West Germans say Meissner defected after he was picked up July 9 for shoplifting in West Berlin. They say he confessed to being a spy, but apparently changed his mind after meeting with intelligence agents in Munich, and then fled to the East German mission.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|