Russian arrested in Cyprus at US request for smuggling electronics

A Russian and German citizen, Artur Petrov, was arrested in Cyprus for illegally exporting sensitive US military microelectronics to Russia in violation of US export controls.

The United States Department of Justice reported this.

The detained Russian man is accused of participating in the illegal procurement of large quantities of sensitive US-made microelectronics for a Russian company that supplies it to manufacturers of military equipment.

Petrov, 33, who has dual Russian-German citizenship and lives in Russia and Cyprus, was arrested on 26 August in the Republic of Cyprus at the request of the United States.

According to court documents, together with two other Russians, he fraudulently purchased large quantities of microelectronics for Electrocom VPK LLC, a supplier of critical electronic components for arms manufacturers and other equipment in Russia, from US distributors.

Petrov was charged with several counts, including conspiracy to defraud the United States, export control violations, smuggling, fraud and money laundering. Each of them carries a maximum sentence of five to 20 years.

In another case, Swedish prosecutors filed espionage charges against Sweden and the United States in favour of Russia against a suspect believed to have been involved in intelligence activities for nine years.

Swedish investigators also believe that 60-year-old Sergei Skvortsov, detained on suspicion of espionage, organised the supply of sanctioned goods to Russia through Finnish companies.

Prosecutors said the suspect gathered information on behalf of Russia that could be detrimental to the US and Swedish security and provided Moscow with technology it could not procure on the open market due to the economic sanctions and international trade regulations.

With these recent cases, Western law enforcement services have shown that those who help Russia circumvent sanctions and sustain its war machines with sensitive foreign technologies face an immediate penalty.

Image: an illustrative picture

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