By John Ensor •
Published: 15 Aug 2023 • 13:35
British fugitive arrested
Three individuals suspected of spying for Russia have been detained in the UK, as a result of a significant national security inquiry.
The accused, all of Bulgarian origin, were apprehended in February in the UK and have been held in custody ever since. The suspects are: Orlin Roussev, 45, from Great Yarmouth, Norfolk; Bizer Dzhambazov, 41, and Katrin Ivanova, 31, both residents of Harrow, north-west London, according to the BBC, Tuesday, August 15.
The trio are believed to have been operatives for Russian intelligence agencies. They are accused of having identity documents with ‘improper intention,’ knowing that they were fraudulent.
These documents encompass passports, ID cards, and other papers from the UK, Bulgaria, Italy, Spain, France, Czech Republic, Croatia, Slovenia, and Greece.
Arrested under the Official Secrets Act, the Metropolitan Police’s counter-terrorism unit, responsible for national espionage policing, carried out the actions.
Living in the UK for several years, the three suspects have occupied various suburban residences and held different occupations.
Mr Roussev, who has prior business connections in Russia, relocated to the UK in 2009. He worked for three years in a technical financial services role.
His LinkedIn profile reveals that he later managed a business in signals intelligence, focusing on the capture of electronic communications or signals. Mr Roussev also claims to have once served as a consultant to the Bulgarian energy ministry.
In Harrow, ex-neighbours depicted Mr Dzhambazov and Ms Ivanova as partners. Mr Dzhambazov worked as a hospital driver, while Ms Ivanova’s LinkedIn profile lists her as a private health business lab assistant.
Having moved to the UK roughly ten years ago, the couple operated a community organisation aiding Bulgarians, including acquainting them with the ‘culture and norms of British society.’ Bulgarian online state documents show they also served on London electoral commissions for Bulgarian expatriates.
Neighbours at two former residences of the couple mentioned their habit of gifting pies and cakes. At their latest Harrow residence, neighbours observed detectives conducting an extensive search, with noticeable police activity for over a week.
Counter-terrorism authorities have openly discussed the growing time spent on suspected state threats and espionage, particularly concerning Russia, following infamous incidents involving Russian intelligence activities in the UK.
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Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
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