Russian intelligence service identifies traitor in U.S. spy scandal
The Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) disclosed the name of a mole who betrayed the Russia's spies in the U.S. late June, Moscow's Kommersant business daily reported on Thursday, Xinhua reported.
SVR's source identified its former officer, colonel Shcherbakov, as a traitor, the Kommersant said.
The SVR admitted it has overlooked the traitor whose daughter has been living in the U.S. for ten years, and his son who had worked for Russia's drug watchdog Gosnarkokontrol hastily left Moscow for the U.S. shortly before the Russian agents were exposed. Shcherbakov himself fled Russia three days prior to President Dmitry Medvedev's visit to the United States in June.
The intelligence service also admitted it has failed to alarm itself when Shcherbakov refused to accept a promotion last year, because that would require him to undergo a lie detector test. This could mean that he had been cooperating with U.S. secret services by the time, the newspaper said.
Also on Thursday, deputy head of the Russian parliament's security committee, Gennady Gudkov, proposed kicking off a special parliamentary investigation of the state of affairs in the SVR, Interfax news agency reported.
He called the case "an example of moral degradation of the state's elite who collected their fortune by using their official positions."
"The treason undermined both Russian intelligence's image and its future," Gudkov said.
The spy scandal broke out in late June when 10 Russian spies were arrested in the U.S. They were later freed in a swap deal between the two countries.