Tuesday, May 28, 2024
Tuesday, May 28, 2024
Home » Sweden Releases Suspected Russian Spy From Custody

Sweden Releases Suspected Russian Spy From Custody

by Calvin Smith

A Stockholm court on Monday ordered a Russian-Swedish citizen accused of passing Western technology to Russia to be released from custody ahead of its verdict on October 26.

Sergei Skvortsov has been held in detention since his arrest in a spectacular dawn raid on his Stockholm home in November 2022.

He faces up to five years in prison for “unlawful intelligence activities” if convicted.

The Stockholm district court said Monday it had “decided that there is no longer reason to keep the defendant in custody.”

Skvortsov’s lawyer Ulrika Borg told AFP this should not be interpreted as a sign of a future acquittal.

While “it is always gratifying when a client who denies any wrongdoing is released … it is impossible to predict whether the court is going to acquit him,” she said.

The 60-year-old has lived in Sweden since the 1990s, running import-export companies.

He is charged with two counts of “unlawful intelligence activities” against the United States and Sweden for over a decade until his arrest in November 2022.

Prosecutors have sought a sentence of up to five years for Skvortsov, arguing he was a “procurement agent” for a vast Russian organisation acquiring technology off-limits to Moscow due to sanctions.

According to experts quoted in the Swedish media, the technology concerned mainly electronic devices that can be used in nuclear research.

Skvortsov maintains he is a legitimate businessman.

He and his wife were arrested in a raid on their home in the Stockholm suburb of Nacka, when two Black Hawk helicopters and an elite commando force swooped down on their house.

His wife was later released and allegations against her dismissed.

Source: macaubusiness

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