Europe

Son of close Putin ally arrested for drone flight in Svalbard

A Norwegian judge on Tuesday ordered the son of one of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s closest allies to be detained for two weeks at the request of the country’s police.

“The man, who holds Russian and British citizenship, has been charged with violating section 4 of the Sanctions Act by flying a drone over Norwegian territory in the Svalbard archipelago,” police prosecutor Anja Mikkelsen Indbjør said. told the Barents Observer.

“Police arrested a man at Hammerfest on October 17 and seized a drone and electronics that are currently under analysis,” she said.

“content [recordings] Information from drones is very important to the case,” the prosecutor added.

In court, the accused said he should be considered a British citizen and had a home address in Italy. I was on a sailing yacht.

Police investigators found the suspect’s Russian passport on board.

“He admitted to flying the drone but had no reason to believe this was illegal. He is a British citizen,” said his attorney Jens Bernhard Herstad, who said the court order was appealed. He added that he would.

The 47-year-old man is known to have a close relationship with President Putin and is the son of a prominent Russian businessman who was placed on the US State Department’s sanctions list following the 2014 annexation of Crimea.

The suspect himself made headlines this year by publicly denouncing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and adding that he never voted for Mr Putin.

The man was arrested at Hammerfest, home to Europe’s northernmost liquefied natural gas processing plant.

The arrest comes just days after six other Russian citizens were arrested in Norway on similar grounds.

Norway recently introduced Enhanced security and preparedness Around objects of significant strategic importance. Several Coast Guard ships now patrol the waters around the offshore energy facility, and the country’s Home Guard is mobilizing troops on land.

https://www.themoscowtimes.com/2022/10/19/son-of-close-putin-ally-arrested-for-flying-drone-in-svalbard-a79132 Son of close Putin ally arrested for drone flight in Svalbard

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