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Russia security service investigating Litvinenko-Berezovsky UK spying claims

[JURIST] The Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB) [official website, in Russian] Friday announced it is investigating allegations made by Russian businessman Andrei Lugovoy [JURIST news archive] that the deceased former KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko [BBC profile; BBC timeline] and alleged coup plotter Boris Berezovsky [JURIST news archive] spied for Great Britain. Lugovoy, who is currently sought by Britain's Crown Prosecution Service (CRS) [official website] for the polonium poisoning death of Litvinenko, made the allegations on May 31, saying that the British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS) had attempted to recruit him through Litvinenko and accused Berezovsky of also working for the SIS. Berezovsky has denied the allegations, dismissing them as an attempt to deflect attention away from Lugovoy's legal troubles.

On May 30, the Russian Office of the Prosecutor-General [official website, in Russian] dismissed suggestions [JURIST report] made by a Russian lawmaker that Lugovoy could be extradited to the UK in exchange for Berezovsky. Russian authorities have insisted that the Russian constitution forbids the extradition of its citizens [MFA statement] for alleged crimes committed abroad. Berezovsky, a billionaire currently residing in the UK on asylum [JURIST report], has been charged in Russia with attempting to plot a coup against Russian President Vladimir Putin. AP has more.

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