Russia jails Ukrainian man for 11-1/2 years for attempting to buy secret missile parts

By Thomson Reuters Feb 28, 2024 | 2:21 AM

MOSCOW (Reuters) – A court in southern Russia has jailed a Ukrainian man for 11-1/2 years after convicting him of espionage for trying to procure secret missile components for Ukraine, Russian news agencies reported on Wednesday.

The agencies cited Russia’s FSB security service as saying that the man, who it named as 57-year-old Sergei Krivitsky, was an agent for Ukrainian military intelligence. They did not say whether he pleaded guilty or not.

The FSB was cited as saying that he had tried to buy secret components for Russia’s S-300 surface to air missile system in order to smuggle them into Ukraine.

The FSB said Krivitsky was a resident of Melitopol, a Ukrainian city taken by Russian forces in early 2022 as part of what Moscow calls its special military operation. Moscow says Melitopol is now part of Russia, something Kyiv and the West reject.

In 2023, Russia opened 31 espionage cases and 98 treason cases, the highest number since the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union.

(Reporting by Reuters; Editing by Andrew Osborn)