The neighbors were amazed when they saw the Säpo special forces – Swedish intelligence – descend from two American Black Hawk helicopters. In this bourgeois and problem-free suburban district on the outskirts of Stockholm, the inhabitants witnessed a real scene from the movie, when the couple of sixties Russians, “ordinary people” suspected of being in the pay of Moscow, were arrested. .
“Vulnerable geographical location”
Unlike the dramatic expulsions of Russian diplomats that took place in the spring, the suspects did not enjoy any immunity. The Säpo, which does not want to expand on their profile, simply indicates that the investigation was in progress ” since a while “. One of them will appear for “unlawful aggravated intelligence activity against Sweden and aggravated intelligence activity against a foreign power,” the other is accused of complicity.
Ukraine’s aggression signaled the end of a form of naivety. Last May, a study by the Swedish Defense Research Agency (FOI) confirmed that the conflict “begets spies” in Europe, and that the Scandinavian countries are particularly exposed, in particular for “acquire military and civilian technologies”. “This is espionage by infiltration with the aim of finding secret or sensitive information. Most of the active spies are in northern Europe and the Baltic countries. Sweden is therefore considered to have a vulnerable geographical situation. »
Last year, a case has already made a lot of noise: a consultant in the automotive sector was sentenced to prison, after having spied on Volvo and the Swedish truck manufacturer Scania. And, in November, justice had already indicted two Swedish brothers for “aggravated espionage” for the benefit of the General Directorate of Russian Intelligence.
Awareness of Russian infiltrations
The strategic companies of the Scandinavian kingdom know they are targeted. “Previously, there were no systematic and thorough checks of Russian profiles, admits an executive from Vattenfall, Sweden’s leading energy provider. Recently, we did not hire a professionally irreproachable Russian trainee: we realized that she had copied an abnormally large number of files. »
Sweden is not the only Scandinavian country to discover the extent of Russian infiltration. The Norwegian secret services arrested a Brazilian researcher named José Assis Giammaria this fall, suspected of being a Russian spy. The man had built his expertise on the security of the Arctic, in Canada, before taking a position at the University of Tromsø, in the north of the country.
This case came on the heels of the arrests of seven Russian citizens accused of having illegally flown over Norwegian territory or photographed sensitive sites. Among them, Andrey Yakunin, the son of a close friend of Vladimir Putin who claimed to have come on vacation.
Source : WORLD NEWS