LONDON (AP) — British authorities on Thursday charged five Bulgarians living in the U.K. with spying for Russia.
The Crown Prosecution Service said it had authorized charges of conspiracy to conduct espionage against three men and two women.
The five — Orlin Roussev, 45, Bizer Dzhambazov, 41, Katrin Ivanova, 31, Ivan Stoyanov, 31, and Vanya Gaberova, 29 — are accused of “conspiring to collect information intended to be directly or indirectly useful to an enemy,” namely Russia, between August 2020 and February this year.
Roussev lives in the eastern England seaside town of Great Yarmouth, and the others in the London area.
All five were arrested early this year by counterterrorism detectives on suspicion of an offense under the Official Secrets Act. Roussev, Dzhambazov, and Ivanova were charged in February with having false identity documents. During a court appearance in July, prosecutors said they had 34 ID documents, some of which were suspected to be false, from the U.K., Bulgaria, France, Italy, Spain, Croatia, Slovenia, Greece and the Czech Republic.
The five suspects are due to appear at London’s Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.