Chinese spy Christine Lee is daughter of Hong Kong immigrant


Revealed: Chinese Communist agent is the daughter of a Hong Kong immigrant who ran Chinese takeaways and restaurants

  • Christine Lee moved with her parents to Northern Ireland in 1974 before relocating to the West Midlands in 1985
  • She married her first husband in Birmingham when she was 21
  • Some five years later she married Martin Wilkes in Solihull; they had two children
  • Mr Wilkes, 71, who is also a solicitor, is listed as a director of five of Miss Lee’s companies


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The mother at the heart of the MI5 security alert is the daughter of a Hong Kong immigrant who ran Chinese takeaways and restaurants.

Christine Lee moved with her parents to Northern Ireland in 1974 before relocating to the West Midlands in 1985 and marrying her first husband in Birmingham when she was 21.

Some five years later she married Martin Wilkes in Solihull and the couple had two children. Mr Wilkes, 71, who is also a solicitor, is listed as a director of five of Miss Lee’s companies and has been described as the head of Christine Lee & Co’s Birmingham office and its conveyancing department.

A profile on the company’s website says he is responsible for the ‘smooth running of the firm’ and that he has more than three decades of experience in property law.

Christine Lee (pictured) moved with her parents to Northern Ireland in 1974 before relocating to the West Midlands in 1985 and marrying her first husband in Birmingham when she was 21

Christine Lee (pictured) moved with her parents to Northern Ireland in 1974 before relocating to the West Midlands in 1985 and marrying her first husband in Birmingham when she was 21

Christine Lee (pictured) moved with her parents to Northern Ireland in 1974 before relocating to the West Midlands in 1985 and marrying her first husband in Birmingham when she was 21

There is no suggestion of any wrongdoing on the part of Mr Wilkes. A family source described being introduced by Mr Wilkes to his wife on just one occasion at a Chinese restaurant after a family christening.

The source said: ‘Christine seemed very nice and [she and Martin] were a nice couple. I knew she was a lawyer and was very bright. That was in Birmingham but we’ve not seen them since.

‘We were close to Martin when we were growing up and this is such a shock.

‘When I saw her on the news I didn’t even realise it was the same woman. She doesn’t use the name Wilkes so this is just an amazing twist. Martin is very nice but we have not been in touch for years. This will really rattle everyone.’

Another source added: ‘Bit of a shock to think there’s a spy in the family.’ The couple and their two sons appear to have amassed a large fortune and own two properties worth £1.77million.

Some five years later she married Martin Wilkes in Solihull and the couple had two children. Mr Wilkes, 71, who is also a solicitor, is listed as a director of five of Miss Lee's companies and has been described as the head of Christine Lee & Co's Birmingham office and its conveyancing department. (Above, Miss Lee's office in London)

Some five years later she married Martin Wilkes in Solihull and the couple had two children. Mr Wilkes, 71, who is also a solicitor, is listed as a director of five of Miss Lee's companies and has been described as the head of Christine Lee & Co's Birmingham office and its conveyancing department. (Above, Miss Lee's office in London)

Some five years later she married Martin Wilkes in Solihull and the couple had two children. Mr Wilkes, 71, who is also a solicitor, is listed as a director of five of Miss Lee’s companies and has been described as the head of Christine Lee & Co’s Birmingham office and its conveyancing department. (Above, Miss Lee’s office in London)

Miss Lee and Mr Wilkes live in a £1million house in an upmarket gated estate in the smart market town of Solihull, where three luxury cars were parked yesterday.

Miss Lee has spoken previously of her ‘troubled’ childhood in Belfast, where she attended a top boarding school. She recalled being bullied and teased ‘for her yellow skin and black eyes’. In a revealing YouTube video she also spoke about how she encouraged the ‘weaker boarders’ to get together and stand up to the bullies.

‘They didn’t know what to do at first so I started to teach them kung fu,’ she said. ‘I didn’t know much about kung fu, I just watched Bruce Lee on TV so I pretended I knew.’

But she claims her troubled childhood made her determined to ‘fight for her rights’ and inspired her to become a lawyer.

She has also previously said she was motivated by her father, who founded the Chinese Community Association in Belfast.

The Mail understands that he ran restaurants and takeaways in Northern Ireland and was listed as a director on one of Miss Lee’s many companies.

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