Prosecutors in Shanghai have filed charges against Peter Humphrey, 58, and Yingzeng Yu, 61. The couple's arrest last year coincided with a Chinese probe into allegations Glaxo staff had funnelled hundreds of millions of pounds through travel agencies to bribe doctors and health officials to boost sales and raise prices.
Their trial, due to take place next month, will be behind closed doors but the Foreign Office said it was pressing China to allow UK embassy staff to attend.
Mr Humphrey and his wife appear wearing orange vests on state television.
He said he found out during his investigation the bribery claims were true, and that he felt "betrayed and used" by Glaxo.
The couple are accused of obtaining information on Chinese citizens by illegally buying it from others or by following people.