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It’s a story from our history that not many Canadians may remember, or even know about. It involved a Soviet double agent, the sale of state secrets, fake moustaches, and even Siberian exile.

At the centre of the story is James Morrison, a former RCMP officer who was charged in the early 1980s for selling secrets to the Soviet Union in the 1950s. At the time, he had disclosed the identity of a Canadian double agent – who was code-named “Gideon” – to the Soviet Union.

At his trial in 1984, James Morrison was represented by John Nelligan, with assistance from Peter Cronyn.

James Morrison first appeared on CBC’s The Fifth Estate back in 1983, and the program circled back to the story last week with a special YouTube feature you can watch here. Peter was interviewed for the episode.

You will also be able to view the episode on The Fifth Estate website here.

 

This content is not intended to provide legal advice or opinion as neither can be given without reference to specific events and situations. © 2021 Nelligan O’Brien Payne LLP.

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