Counterintelligence officers of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) exposed and shut down the spy network of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) operating in Kyiv, Odesa, Mykolaiv, Zhytomyr and Chernihiv regions. The network’s members were former military intelligence officers.

The SBU found out that the citizens of Ukraine had been recruited and performed intelligence tasks assigned by FSB officers Vadim Dautov and Denis Sobko.

In particular, Russian agents were preparing sabotage operations. They were instructed to create conditions for committing acts of sabotage in the Mykolaiv region, namely to facilitate the infiltration of sabotage and reconnaissance groups from the temporarily occupied territories and to organise special training of selected individuals. Combat aircraft of the Armed Forces of Ukraine at Kulbakino airfield were among the targets.

Video of the interrogation of Russian agents

Moreover, the FSB agents collected information on the deployment and movement of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, personnel and operational activity of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defence, Special Operations Forces, Navy Headquarters, and the 73rd Naval Special Operations Centre of the Armed Forces, as well as their interaction with foreign partners, and so on.

To perform their tasks, the agents carried out recruiting work among high-ranking officials of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

In addition, the intention to kidnap and illegally transfer a former commander of the Special Operations Forces to the aggressor country for a monetary reward of USD 100,000 was documented.

During the searches, security officials seized an arsenal of weapons and ammunition, including four AK-74 machine guns, two handguns, two RPGs, 44 grenades, more than 4,000 rounds of ammunition of various calibers, about 3 kg of TNT and electric detonators, etc.

Procedural measures are being taken against the exposed agents under Part 1 of Article 111 (treason), Part 1 of Article 258-3 (creation of a terrorist group or terrorist organisation), Part 1 of Article 263 (illegal handling of weapons, ammunition or explosives) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

The espionage activity of the FSB officers, who were in charge of the spy network, is being investigated in criminal proceedings under Part 1 of Article 114 (espionage) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

Natalia Tolub

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