Local News

Former Intelligence Officer Arrested In Chapel Hill

Posted September 2, 2004

— Federal agents caught up with a former intelligence agent Thursday in Chapel Hill. Investigators will not say whether Juan Reyes-Alonso was spying in the Triangle, only that he broke an immigration law.

Immigration officials say Reyes-Alonso had "extensive training and a long career as a Cuban Intelligence officer." He came to the United States in September 2000 with his American fiancee, whom he later married.

Investigators say Reyes-Alonso violated the "Foreign Agent Registration Act." Congress passed the law in 1938 to counter German propaganda.

The act requires foreign agents to register with the Department of Justice within 10 days and update the U.S. Attorney General's office every six months.

Sources close to the case say Reyes-Alonso works at UNC-Medical Center as a greeter and lives in Pittsboro with his wife.

Reyes-Alonso applied for a permanent residency card last year. That case is still pending, but the fact that he failed to register as a foreign agent supercedes that. He is now being held pending an appearance before an immigration judge in Atlanta.

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