UK: Five Bulgarians have been accused of Espionage in favor of Russia

Politics | September 21, 2023, Thursday // 17:31
Bulgaria: UK: Five Bulgarians have been accused of Espionage in favor of Russia

The three men and two women, aged 29 to 45, are accused of conspiring between August 2020 and February of this year to "collect information intended to be directly or indirectly useful to an enemy, for a purpose which harms the security and interests of the state," according to Britain's Crown Prosecution Service.

Orlin Rusev, 45, Biser Djambazov, 41, Katrin Ivanova, 31, Ivan Stoyanov, 31, and Vanya Gaberova, 29, all Bulgarian citizens living in London and Norfolk, will face Westminster Magistrates' Court on Tuesday, September 26.

They are all charged with conspiring to collect information between August 30, 2020 and February 8, 2023, which could be of benefit to an enemy state. This follows an investigation by London police. The defendants are said to have acted as an operational spy cell for the Russian security services, monitoring specific targets.

Rusev, 45, is said to have directed operations from the UK and was the liaison to those receiving the information. During a search of homes occupied by Rusev, Djambazov and Ivanova, the police found fake passports and official identity documents from the United Kingdom, Bulgaria, France, Italy, Spain, Croatia, Slovenia, Greece and the Czech Republic. It is alleged that Rusev personally forged documents.

According to documents from Bulgaria, Jambazov and Ivanova also worked for electoral commissions in London during voting in Bulgarian elections abroad. The two had a platform for services for Bulgarians, facilitating their life in the UK, including familiarization with the "culture and norms of British society".

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Tags: espionage, Russia, Bulgarians, british

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