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Former government terrorism tsar holds paid advisory role at partner of blacklisted Chinese firm

working on Beijing's nuclear weapons programme


  • Lord Carlile advising UK wing of firm that works on Chinese nuclear weapons

  • He works for Bikal Tech, the UK partner of Chinese firm banned from the US

  • Its surveillance tech was used against persecuted Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang

  • Lord Carlile was UK Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation from 2001-11


By GLEN OWEN and SAM MERRIMAN

31 December 2022

Lord Carlile of Berriew (pictured) is a paid adviser to Bikal Tech, the British partner of a Chinese supercomputer company that is banned from the US because its surveillance technology has been used by Beijing against the persecuted Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang


A former government terrorism tsar is advising the UK wing of a blacklisted company that works on the Chinese nuclear weapons programme, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.


Lord Carlile of Berriew is a paid adviser to Bikal Tech, the British partner of a Chinese supercomputer company that is banned from the US because its surveillance technology has been used by Beijing against the persecuted Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang.


Last night the peer said he had been unaware that the Chinese firm was subject to sanctions until informed by The Mail on Sunday and said he would 'review' the relationship in light of this information and would end it if the facts are confirmed.


Lord Carlile, the UK's Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation from 2001 to 2011, co-founded intelligence consultancy SC Strategy with Sir John Scarlett, the former head of MI6.


His Lords register of interests state that he is a paid consultant to Bikal Distribution GKB Ltd and has been a shareholder of sister company TransteknIQ Ltd since May 2020.


Chinese state-owned company Sugon, which is listed as a 'partner' on Bikal's website, was blacklisted by the US in 2019 as it said it was involved in China's development of nuclear weapon systems and surveillance of the Uyghurs.


Bikal has a formal agreement with Sugon to work on analysis of 'private and public sector' data and uses the Chinese company's computers to run its surveillance systems.

Bikal's founder, Raj Sandhu, is Sugon's 'country representative' in the UK. Mr Sandhu has known Lord Carlile since 2015 and first approached him about using new technology to reduce vehicle thefts.


In 2021, Bikal entered a data-sharing agreement with West Midlands Police that saw it hand over vast amounts of police information for a year.

Chinese state-owned company Sugon, which is listed as a 'partner' on Bikal's website, was blacklisted by the US in 2019 as it said it was involved in China's development of nuclear weapon systems and surveillance of the Uyghurs. Pictured: A guard tower and barbed wire fences surround an internment facility in the Kunshan Industrial Park in Artux in Xinjiang


Lord Carlile said he 'supported' the approach to West Midlands Police and still believes that the arrangement is legitimate and 'very beneficial in reducing serious motor vehicle crime'. There is no suggestion of wrongdoing.


Last night Lord Carlile said he was unaware that Sugon was sanctioned by the United States until he was told by The Mail on Sunday.


He added: 'I will do what any responsible person will do and ascertain whether Bikal has behaved with propriety or not.


'If they have not, I will not continue my relationship.'



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