June 22, 1997 |
We live in the age of confession, of the memoir, of the "tell-all." Even a figure like Markus Wolf, whose job was never to say a word, turns out not to be immune to the seductions of the genre. As "the greatest spymaster of our century," or so his publisher would have us believe, Wolf might seem to be the last man willing to tell secrets.
October 19, 1995 |
Germany's federal appeals court threw out the conviction of former East German spymaster Markus Wolf and ordered a retrial to determine if he ever personally spied in the West. The decision follows a May 23 ruling by Germany's highest court that East German spy leaders could not be tried for treason if their work was done entirely in East Germany. Wolf, who headed East Germany's foreign intelligence service from 1953 to 1986, was sentenced to six years in prison in 1993 for espionage.
June 29, 1993
Four weeks after opening amid a flurry of publicity, eyes focus once again Wednesday on the trial of the Cold War's most innovative spymaster, Markus Wolf, the man who developed and directed East Germany's network of 5,000 to 6,000 espionage agents. Scheduled to take the stand is Guenther Guillaume, who spy buffs remember was the East German agent that Wolf planted in the office of then-West German Chancellor Willy Brandt.
May 4, 1993
The country he served no longer exists; the secrets he stole no longer matter. Nonetheless, Markus Wolf, former maestro of East Germany's formidable spy network, goes on trial today on charges of bribery, espionage and treason. Wolf, 70, one of the Communist East's most colorful characters, fancied danger and life's finer things. Reputedly, thriller writer John Le Carre based his protagonist Karla on Wolf. Debate rages around the merits of the case.
May 28, 1997 |
A lengthy attempt to prosecute Markus Wolf, the legendary "man without a face" who ran East Germany's spy agency for more than 30 years, ended with a whimper Tuesday as a state high court gave him a two-year suspended sentence on relatively minor charges and let him leave the courthouse a free man.
May 5, 1993 |
The Cold War's most notorious spymaster, Markus Wolf, went on trial Tuesday in united Germany, contending that he faces "absurd" charges of treason, bribery and espionage "because the public wants to see a scapegoat." Cool and occasionally wry, the former chief of Communist East Germany's embarrassingly successful espionage network defended his 30-year career of stealing the West's most precious secrets as an honorable duty to a sovereign state whose laws he did not break.