How a poisoning in Bulgaria exposed Russian assassins in Europe

By | December 22, 2019

The New York Times reports:

The Russian assassin used an alias, Sergei Fedotov, and slipped into Bulgaria unnoticed, checking into a hotel in Sofia near the office of a local arms manufacturer who had been selling ammunition to Ukraine.

He led a team of three men.

Within days, one man sneaked into a locked parking garage, smeared poison on the handle of the arms manufacturer’s car, then left, undetected, except for blurry images captured by surveillance video.

Shortly after, the arms manufacturer, Emilian Gebrev, was meeting with business partners at a rooftop restaurant when he began to hallucinate and vomit.

The poisoning left Mr. Gebrev, now 65, hospitalized for a month. His son was poisoned, and so was another top executive at his company. When Mr. Gebrev was discharged, the assassins poisoned him and his son again, at their summer home on the Black Sea. They all survived, though Mr. Gebrev’s business has yet to recover fully.

The assassination attempts in 2015 were remarkable not only for their brazenness and persistence, but also because security and intelligence officials in the West initially did not notice. Bulgarian prosecutors looked at the case, failed to unearth any evidence and closed it. [Continue reading…]

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