Netherlands says Russian spy caught seeking war crimes court internship

Netherlands says Russian spy caught seeking war crimes court internship

AMSTERDAM – The Dutch intelligence service stated on Thursday it had uncovered a Russian navy agent trying to make use of a false id to infiltrate the Worldwide Felony Courtroom (ICC) which is investigating accusations of warfare crimes in Ukraine.

Sergey Vladimirovich Cherkasov created an elaborate cowl story courting again years to try to enter the Netherlands as a Brazilian nationwide for an internship on the Hague-based ICC in April, the company’s head instructed Reuters.

“This was a long-term, multi-year GRU operation that price a number of time, vitality and cash,” stated Dutch intelligence company chief Erik Akerboom, utilizing the acronym for Russia’s navy intelligence service.

No GRU consultant could possibly be instantly reached for remark, although President Vladimir Putin’s authorities has up to now continuously denied spying accusations as a Western smear marketing campaign in opposition to Moscow.

The HQ of the Primary Directorate of the Basic Workers of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, previously often called the Primary Intelligence Directorate (GRU), in Moscow, Russia October 4, 2018. Reuters

The Dutch Basic Intelligence and Safety Service (AIVD) stated in an announcement that the person, who glided by the alias Viktor Muller Ferreira, was picked up at a Dutch airport. He was declared an undesirable alien and placed on the subsequent flight again to Brazil, it added.

Brazil’s federal police stated Cherkasov was taken into custody and is being prosecuted for using false paperwork.

“It clearly reveals us what the Russians are as much as – making an attempt to realize unlawful entry to info throughout the ICC. We classify this as a high-level risk,” Akerboom added, saying the ICC had accepted him for an internship.

There was no fast touch upon the case from the Russian authorities or the ICC.

The Dutch company stated it had taken the weird step of releasing detailed info on the case to reveal the workings of Russian intelligence and risk to different worldwide establishments.

It distributed a four-page doc outlining what it stated was Cherkasov’s invented cowl story. That included supposed troubled household historical past and particulars from a membership the place he preferred to hearken to digital trance music and his favourite restaurant in Brasilia the place he would eat low-cost brown bean stew.

“Cherkasov used a well-constructed cowl id by which he hid all his ties with Russia usually, and the GRU specifically,” the assertion stated.

Brazilian police stated Cherkasov entered Brazil in 2010 and assumed the false id of a Brazilian whose mother and father had died. Passing for a Brazilian, he lived in Eire and america for a number of years, the police assertion stated and had returned to Brazil to arrange his transfer to the Netherlands.

The ICC, a everlasting world warfare crimes tribunal with 123 member states, opened an investigation in Ukraine simply days after Putin despatched his troops in on Feb. 24. It’s inspecting allegations of warfare crimes, crimes in opposition to humanity, and genocide.

The Dutch have expelled greater than 20 Russians accused of spying lately.

They embody 4 individuals accused in 2018 of hacking the Group for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), two accused of spying within the company, high-tech sector in 2020, and 17 suspected operatives accredited as diplomats who have been thrown out after this yr’s invasion of Ukraine.

Russia has denied all the costs and responded to the most recent expulsions by additionally kicking out 15 Dutch embassy and consulate workers from Moscow and St. Petersburg.

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