The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) has neutralized a branch of FSB agents who were preparing missile strikes on Ukrzaliznytsia facilities and selecting staff in the administration of the occupation authorities.
The large-scale operation was conducted in the Kharkiv and Donetsk oblasts. The group consisted of eight locals. One of them used the status of an assistant to a sitting member of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and a journalist’s identification card for cover.
The perpetrators were collecting reconnaissance information about the locations of the deployment and movement of the Ukrainian military in the regions, especially routes of military convoys and the locations of railway stations where the Ukrainian Army unloads weapons.
The agents were also gathering intelligence on the locations of ammunition depots, firing positions, checkpoints, and fortifications of Ukrainian troops in the front-line areas of eastern Ukraine and in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast.
During the temporary occupation of Izium and Balakliia, the suspects were selecting candidate quislings to staff the Russian occupation administrations.
The SBU counterintelligence officers documented the criminal actions of Russian agents step by step and detained four participants in the hostile network. Another four are on Russian territory. Comprehensive measures are being taken against them to hold them accountable.
According to the investigation, the agent network was formed by two career FSB officers prior to the start of the full-scale invasion. It included an agent who had previously been recruited by the Honorary Consul of the Russian Federation in Kharkiv.
After Russia’s invasion of 24 February 2022, the FSB “activated” its network to conduct reconnaissance and subversive activities against Ukraine. Russian symbols and pro-Kremlin literature were also found in their homes.
Based on the collected evidence, the Security Service investigators informed the detainees they were suspected of committing an offense under Part 2 of Article 111 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (state treason committed under conditions of martial law).
The court chose the preventive measure of detention.