Labour say new Jeremy Corbyn spy claims are ‘like plot from bad James Bond movie’
Labour have dismissed as "a ridiculous smear" fresh claims about Jeremy Corbyn's involvement with a Czech spy at the height of the Cold War.
Speaking publicly for the first time since the row broke, former secret agent Jan Sarkocy insisted the Labour leader knew he was not a "diplomat" when they met for talks in the House of Commons.
"It was a conscious cooperation. Diplomat and agent were the same thing,” Mr Sarkocy said.
Mr Sarkocy claimed he met Mr Corbyn a handful of times, during which the then-backbench Labour MP supplied him with information.
The former spy said it was routine for the Czechoslovak secret services to pay informants, but he stressed he had not personally handed over any money to Mr Corbyn.
He added: "Mr Corbyn was an honest man, but stupid."
But a spokesman for the Labour leader said high-ranking Czech officials had conformed that Mr Corbyn had never had anything to do with them.
"As Svetlana Ptacnikova, Director of the Czech Security Forces Archive, has made clear, Jeremy was neither an agent, asset, informer nor collaborator with Czechoslovak intelligence," he said. "These claims are a ridiculous smear and entirely false.
"The former Czechoslovak agent Jan Sarkocy's account of his meeting with Jeremy was false 30 years ago, is false now and has no credibility whatsoever. His story has more plot holes in it than a bad James Bond movie."
Former MI6 head Sir Richard Dearlove has accused Mr Corbyn of being "incredibly naive" for agreeing to meet Mr Sarkocy.
He said: "They were the enemies of the West. They wouldn’t have targeted him unless they believed he was a Communist fellow traveller."
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