SOUTH KOREAN police said they were investigating a mysterious break-in at a visiting Indonesian official’s hotel room in Seoul as local media reported Monday that South Korean spies had tried to steal documents about a possible arms deal.
Last Wednesday, three people broke into a Seoul hotel room used by an aide to the leader of a visiting Indonesian delegation, police officer Shin Seong-chul said. The two men and one woman used a USB flash drive to copy files from one of two laptop computers in the room. The aide returned while the intruders were there, but they soon fled and no clash was reported.
South Korean defense officials who had been guiding the Indonesians reported the break-in to police. The laptops were handed over for an investigation, but the Indonesian aide requested their return the next day and said he wouldn’t allow access to the computers.
On Monday, South Korea’s mass-circulation Chosun Ilbo newspaper reported that the intruders were agents from the National Intelligence Service, the country’s main spy agency.
The paper, citing an unidentified South Korean official, said the agents were trying to steal information on Indonesia’s strategy on negotiations over South Korea’s push to sell trainer jets, missiles and other weapons.
The Hankyoreh newspaper carried a similar report Monday, saying the trespassers were believed to be South Korean intelligence agents.