Two individuals who had been detained by Slovakia authorities on Tuesday under suspicion of espionage are being prosecuted for allegedly passing sensitive information to the Russian secret services for financial gain.
The former vice-rector of the military academy in Liptovský Mikuláš and the correspondent of the Hlavné správy server are being prosecuted and could face up to 13 years in prison if found guilty.
Both men have pleaded guilty to being spies for the Kremlin, according to Police President Štefan Hamran and the head of the Prosecutor’s Office Daniel Lipšic, in what is the first case of its kind in the modern history of Slovakia.
“In the case of the former vice-rector, it was a long-term paid cooperation with Russian intelligence,” Lipšic said.
The former vice-rector is suspected of cooperating with the Russian GRU military intelligence service since 2013, handing it sensitive documents.
“He revealed information of strategic importance at the level of secret and top-secret concerning the North Atlantic Alliance,” Hamran added.
According to Hamran, the prosecuted correspondent of the Hlavné správy portal collected and handed over various sensitive information and had attempted to obtain information from non-public reports on the Slovak Information Service (SIS) and military intelligence activities, which the Slovak Chamber of Deputies deals with on a yearly basis.
Lipšic said that some of the information leaked to Russia also concerned Ukraine.
Slovak military intelligence assisted authorities in investigating the case. The Slovak Denník N daily published a compilation of recordings from the meetings of the said correspondent with the assistant of the military attaché of the Russian embassy, Sergei Solomasov. According to Denník N, Solomasov is one of three employees of the Russian embassy that Slovakia expelled in response to the affair.