MOSCOW, January 27 (RAPSI) – Russian national Yevgeny Buryakov, who was arrested by the FBI on suspicion of espionage and taken to a Manhattan court on Monday, has been denied bail, TASS reported on Tuesday.
Buryakov, 39, who worked in a Manhattan branch of a Russian state-run bank, was arrested in the Bronx. His alleged accomplices, trade representative Igor Sporyshev (40) and UN attaché Viktor Podobny (27), are no longer in the United States. US prosecutors claim that the three men worked for Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR).
If found guilty, Buryakov can be given a 15-year sentence.
US Magistrate Judge Sarah Netburn argued that if released on bail, Buryakov would leave the United States. He has “every incentive to flee,” Judge Netburn said. “His cover has now been blown,” she said, referring to Buryakov’s job in a Manhattan branch of Russia’s Vnesheconombank (VEB).
Later on Tueaday, Vnesheconombank confirmed that Yevgeny Buryakov was indeed an employee of the bank, without offering any further comment.
The US Justice Department statement released on Monday says that the three Russians’ mission was to monitor potential US sanctions against Russian banks and US efforts to develop alternative energy resources.
The statement expands that in numerous recorded conversations, Sporyshev and Podobny discussed their attempts to recruit U.S. residents, including several employees of major companies, and several young women with ties to a major university located in New York City , as intelligence sources for the Russian SVR.
According to the claim, Sporyshev worked in the Russian trade mission in New York until November 2014, and Podobny was an attaché at Russia’s UN mission until September 2013.
The Russian permanent Mission to the UN and Consulate General in New York were not available for comment.
The DOJ statement says that Russian diplomats were monitored by the FBI from as far as 2012 up to 2014, and the gathered evidence leaves little doubt about the nature of their activities, as they openly discussed working for the Russian intelligence.