Estonia intelligence officer held in Moscow jail over ’spy’ claims

  • 2014-09-08
  • By Rayyan Sabet-Parry and wire reports, RIGA

Eston Kohver is taken to a Russian detention center (photo: YouTube)

Russia and Estonia continue to trade blows over the case of a Estonian intelligence officer held in a Moscow jail.

It follows after Estonia's security police (KaPo) claim its agent Eston Kohver, 43 was abducted by gunpoint near the Russia, Estonia border last Friday and taken to Russia illegally.

Kohver was investigating a case of cross border crime when the incident happened, Estonia's security police say.

But Russia's line differs. Media reports in Russia say Kohver was arrested by Russian security police FSB in Russia for carrying out 'espionage' activities.

The agent was allegedly meeting a contact whilst 5,000 euros and a mission brief was found in his possession. 

Kohver is suspected of espionage, smuggling firearms into the country and illegal border crossing, Russian news site reports. 

Estonia's foreign minister Urmas Paet confirmed Kohver was in a Moscow jail awaiting court proceedings. If found guilty, Kohver could face up to 20 years in prison, public broadcasting reports.

"After what we have seen here over the past half a year in the Crimea and Ukraine, everyone is ready for the worst," Paet told Estonian television.

Now, Estonia and Russian border officials are set to meet to discuss the incident. 

Kohver is a long term KaPo employee who was granted Eagle's Cross Vth class service badge by President Toomas Hendrik Ilves in 2010.

Watch the video below showing Kohver being sent to a Russian detention center.