Rwandan Spy Uncovered Within the Royal Canadian Mounted Police

An Alberta-based Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officer, Constable Eli Ndatuje, has been charged with multiple offenses stemming from a national security investigation. This case underlines the ongoing concerns surrounding foreign interference and espionage within Canada, highlighting the complexities of safeguarding national security in a global context.

On February 10th, 2024, the RCMP’s Federal Policing Integrated National Security Enforcement Team (INSET) apprehended Constable Ndatuje for illicitly accessing RCMP records systems that were not classified as “Top Secret.” The primary aim of this unauthorized access was to assist a foreign actor, identified as the Republic of Rwanda. This breach prompted the RCMP to implement rigorous measures aimed at monitoring, mitigating, and managing any further unauthorized disclosures, thereby ensuring the maintenance of public safety.

Constable Ndatuje faces three charges: Breach of Trust under Section 122 of the Criminal Code of Canada, Unauthorized Use of a Computer under Section 342.1(1)(a) of the Criminal Code of Canada, and Breach of Trust in Respect to Safeguarded Information under Section 18(1) of the Security of Information Act. His first court appearance is scheduled for March 11th, 2024, in Calgary Provincial Court.

The allegations against Ndatuje include transmitting safeguarded information from the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC) system to the Rwandan government. CPIC serves as a pivotal national database linking criminal justice and law enforcement partners across Canada and internationally, emphasizing the potential severity of the breach.

Following his arrest, Ndatuje, a 36-year-old residing in Chestermere, was released under several conditions, including the surrender of his passport and a requirement to remain within Alberta. This ongoing investigation has garnered attention due to its implications for national security and the complexities of combating foreign interference.

This incident is part of a broader narrative of Rwandan espionage activities extending beyond its borders. In 2019, revelations about a Rwandan woman, identified for security reasons as Nadège, who admitted to conducting espionage activities in Quebec on behalf of the Rwandan government, brought to light Rwanda’s global intelligence operations. These operations are part of Rwanda’s efforts, led by President Paul Kagame, to monitor its diaspora and counter dissent abroad, despite the regime’s praise for steering Rwanda’s post-genocide recovery.

The charges against Const. Ndatuje are not only about a breach of Canadian national security but also highlight the global challenge of foreign state interference. The juxtaposition of Ndatuje’s case with previous instances of Rwandan espionage in Canada underscores the multifaceted threat posed by foreign intelligence operations, including those conducted by countries not traditionally viewed as major players in global espionage.

As the RCMP continues to investigate and address this breach, the case of Constable Ndatuje serves as a critical reminder of the ongoing vigilance required to protect national security and counter foreign interference.

Eli Bagirishya Ndatuje Rugege, born and raised in Uganda, Eli moved to Canada at age 14 and has since made a home in Canada. He is a former communication officer for the Canadian Association Of Rwandan Youths (CARY) Ottawa. Eli is graduate of Carleton University in legal studies and in psychology.