Bulgaria Charges Six Officials Over Alleged Spying for Russia


Bulgaria’s prosecutors charged six people and detained five of them for allegedly passing technological and military secrets to a diplomat from the Russian embassy in Sofia.

The alleged spying ring involved a former high-ranking military intelligence officer, his wife and a group of state officials, Siyka Mileva, the spokesperson for the country’s chief prosecutor, told reporters in Sofia on Friday.

The Balkan country, which has close historical and cultural ties with Russia, expelled several Russian diplomats for spying in the past two years. A member of NATO since 2004, Bulgaria purchased eight U.S. fighter jets in 2019 as part of a plan to upgrade its Soviet-era military equipment.

The officer’s wife acted as a go-between for the group, delivering the documents they collected to the Russian diplomat, Mileva said. She declined to give further details, citing national security concerns.

The six people, some of whom work for Bulgaria’s military intelligence, could face from 10 years to a lifetime in prison, said Mileva.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

BQ Install

Bloomberg Quint

Add BloombergQuint App to Home screen.