Alleged Chinese Spy Found Dead

( – The British government charged 37-year-old Matthew Trickett with allegedly spying for the Chinese government in early May. The former Royal Marine was released from police custody on May 13. Days later, he was found dead.

On May 19, someone found Trickett dead in Grenfell Park in Maidenhead, England. The town is just west of London. Emergency responders tried to resuscitate him to no avail, and authorities pronounced him dead at the scene. The Thames Valley Police issued a statement saying the death was “being treated as unexplained.”

Trickett and two other men — Chi Leung “Peter” Wai and Chung Biu Yuen — were accused of spying for Hong Kong, the former British colony that’s now part of China. British authorities charged the men, all citizens, under the National Security Act. The deceased man used to serve as a British immigration enforcement officer and was the director of MTR Consultancy, a private security firm.

Before the court let Trickett out on bond, the prosecutor on the case, Kashif Malik, had asked that he remain in custody because he had tried to take his own life after he was arrested. They argued he was a danger to himself. The judge denied the request, and he was released.

The Thames Valley Police revealed Trickett was required to regularly check in with law enforcement as a condition of his bail, so they knew who he was prior to his death. The department has now sent a referral to the Independent Office for Police Conduct. They stressed that’s a normal course of action in a case where a deceased person had previous contact with the police.

Trickett’s family released a statement to the press saying they were “mourning the loss of a much-loved son, brother, and family member.” They asked for privacy while they processed his death.

The other two defendants in the case appeared at a hearing at Old Bailey on May 24.

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