Greenpeace Files Criminal Complaint Over Areva Espionage Report

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Greenpeace International filed a criminal complaint over a French news report that Areva SA, the world’s biggest supplier of nuclear fuel and services, had the environmental activist group spied on.

Spies may have infiltrated three watchdog groups, including Greenpeace, at Areva’s request, according to a Jan. 1 report in the Journal du Dimanche, prompting Greenpeace France to ask the Paris prosecutors to order an investigation today, Adelaide Colin, a Greenpeace France spokeswoman, said by phone.

“We learned of this affair in the press and want all possible light shed on this possible spying operation,” Colin said in a statement about the complaint, which didn’t name Areva as a target.

Greenpeace won damages in a criminal case last year against Electricite de France SA over charges Europe’s biggest power producer hired private investigators to spy on the group’s anti-nuclear activities.

Areva said that it hasn’t spied on Greenpeace.

“There has never been an investigation request into Greenpeace,” said Patricia Marie, a spokeswoman for Paris-based Areva.

Greenpeace opposes France’s reliance on nuclear energy, which produces more than three-quarters of the country’s power. The country’s nuclear industry has been scrutinized in the aftermath of Japan’s Fukushima atomic disaster, and French Greenpeace activists last month broke into two atomic plants operated by EDF to expose security lapses.

To contact the reporter on this story: Heather Smith in Paris at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at