Estonia says one of its security agents kidnapped, smuggled to Russia

By bne IntelliNews September 5, 2014

Mike Collier in Tallinn -

 

In a sensational announcement on September 5 at a time when relations between the West and Russia are already tense, Estonia's internal security service, KAPO, said that one of its agents had been abducted from Estonian soil and taken across the border into Russia.

"On September 5th about 9 in the morning the KAPO officer was abducted while on-duty on Estonian territory by unknown individuals who came from Russia. He was captured using force at gunpoint. He was fulfilling his duties preventing cross-border criminal activity. The abductors jammed radio communication and used smoke grenade,” a KAPO statement said, adding that a criminal investigation had started.

According to national broadcaster ERR, the kidnap took place at Luhamaa, in the extreme south-east of the country and close to the borders of both Russia and Latvia.

The strategic location makes it an important one for smugglers, as it is where one of the main road routes to Moscow from the EU passes via the Luhamaa border checkpoint.

While the likelihood is that criminal gangs are responsible for the abduction, the fact that the victim – yet to be named – could be smuggled back across the border will inevitably raise questions about how the kidnappers could get him past Russia's notoriously pernickety border guards and custom officials without some sort of complicity.

KAPO has a reputation about being unusually forthcoming about even potentially embarrassing information such as this. Most famously, KAPO went public in 2009 with information that Herman Simm, a defence ministry senior security official, had been acting as a Russian double agent and it has named other moles after exposing them.

Estonia won widespread praise for the transparency with which Simm's case was treated, which is in stark contrast to how most other security services handle them.

In this case, disclosure is doubly important because in the current testy geopolitical situation border posts are potential flashpoints.

One of the darkest periods in recent Baltic history came when Russian OMON forces attacked Lithuanian border points in 1991, killing eight and injuring more than 60.

Related Articles

Drum rolls in the great disappearing act of Russia's banks

Jason Corcoran in Moscow - Russian banks are disappearing at the fastest rate ever as the country's deepening recession makes it easier for the central bank to expose money laundering, dodgy lending ... more

Kremlin: No evidence in Olympic doping allegations against Russia

bne IntelliNews - The Kremlin supported by national sports authorities has brushed aside "groundless" allegations of a mass doping scam involving Russian athletes after the World Anti-Doping Agency ... more

PROFILE: Day of reckoning comes for eccentric owner of Russian bank Uralsib

Jason Corcoran in Moscow - Revelations and mysticism may have been the stock-in-trade of Nikolai Tsvetkov’s management style, but ultimately they didn’t help him to hold on to his ... more

Register here to continue reading this article and 2 more for free or purchase 12 months full website access including the bne Magazine for just $119/year.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

To continue viewing our content you need to complete the registration process.

Please look for an email that was sent to with the subject line "Confirmation bne IntelliNews access". This email will have instructions on how to complete registration process. Please check in your "Junk" folder in case this communication was misdirected in your email system.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and magazine

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and monthly magazine, the leading source of business, economic and financial news and commentary in emerging markets.

Your subscription includes:
  • Full access to the bne content daily news and features on the website
  • Newsletters direct to your mailbox
  • Print and digital subscription to the monthly bne magazine
  • Digital subscription to the weekly bne newspaper

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

bne IntelliNews
$119 per year

All prices are in US dollars net of applicable taxes.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Register for free to read bne IntelliNews Magazine. You'll receive a free digital subscription.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

IntelliNews Pro offers daily news updates delivered to your inbox and in-depth data reports.
Get the emerging markets newswire that financial professionals trust.

"No day starts for my team without IntelliNews Pro" — UBS

Thank-you for requesting an IntelliNews Pro trial. Our team will be in contact with you shortly.

Dismiss