Bulgarians detained in Britain on suspicion of spying for Russia

Three Bulgarian citizens were detained in the UK on suspicion of spying for Russia.

As reported by BBC, the three Bulgarians were detained in February and have been in custody since then. They could have worked for Russian special services.

They are accused of possessing false documents that were used for “illegal intentions”.

Among the documents found were passports, identity cards and other documents from the UK, Bulgaria, France, Italy, Spain, Croatia, Slovenia, Greece and the Czech Republic.

All three have been living in the UK for many years, working in various jobs and living in country houses.

Orlin Rusev, 45, moved to the UK in 2009 and worked for three years in technical positions in the financial services sector. He has experience of doing business in Russia.

His LinkedIn profile states that he later owned a business related to signal intelligence, which involves intercepting communications or electronic signals. He claims to have once been an adviser to the Bulgarian Ministry of Energy.

According to neighbours, 41-year-old Bizer Dzhambazov and 31-year-old Katrin Ivanova were a couple. Dzhambazov worked as a driver in a hospital, and Ivanova’s LinkedIn page says she is a laboratory technician in a private medical business.

The couple, who moved to the UK about a decade ago, ran an NGO that provided services to Bulgarians, including introducing them to “the culture and norms of British society”.

They also worked in election commissions in London, which helped Bulgarian citizens vote in national elections abroad.

Russian spies in Europe have become more active this year in the context of Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine and the West’s support for Kyiv. Earlier, the German Federal Prosecutor’s Office arrested Thomas H., a member of the Bundeswehr, suspected of spying for Russia.

On 4 August, a Belarusian citizen was detained in Poland for spying for Russia.

Photo: Illustrative image

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