Dmitri Savins, who is accused of having hijacked the Arctic Sea last summer, has accused the former Estonian intelligence coordinator Erik Niiles Kroos of having ordered the crime, reports EPL Online. Savins said in his testimony that he did not know how to prove it, but businessman and former civil servant Erik Niiles Kross commissioned the hijacking of the vessel. Savins testified that the hijacking was planned with the objective of collecting ransom, and participants in the operation were offered 10,000 euros. Savins, as the organizer, was supposed to collect 100,000 euros, but he claimed that the pay was later raised by two times. Kross himself commented that the hijacking charges against him are false and are Russia’s payback for his help provided to Georgia.
“The claims that I ordered the hijacking of the Arctic Sea are false,” said Kross. He added that he thought that such assertions are linked to his having advised Georgia in matters of security. Kross confirmed that he knows Dmitri Savins. Kross also stated that representatives of Russian, Estonian or any other country’s law enforcement authorities have not turned to him in connection with the case. Public prosecutor Lavly Lepp, who leads the processing of the Arctic Sea case in Estonia, stated that the Prosecutor’s Office and the Security Police Board have checked all known and relevant links between Savins and persons with whom he communicated in Estonia. “The information collected today in the course of the criminal proceedings does not confirm Erik Niiles Kross as being linked to hijacking of the Arctic Sea,” she stated.