Lithuania convicts man for spying for Belarus neighbor

UK News – E.N.A – AP.

VILNIUS – ( LITHUANIA ) –  Lithuanian court has sentenced a former paramedic with the Baltic nation’s armed forces to three years in jail for spying for neighboring Belarus.

The Vilnius Regional Court gave the minimum punishment it could to 29-year-old Andrey Osurkov as it took into account the facts that he had no previous convictions and had pleaded guilty.

The court said Osurkov was recruited by the Belarusian intelligence service 10 years ago and started giving them information on Lithuania’s military five years later. He was arrested in 2014.

Prosecutors said the Belarus service shares information with its Russian counterpart and the information collected was likely intended for Moscow.

In 2015, another Lithuanian man, Romualdas Lipskis, was given three years and three months for similar offences.

The Baltic state has been on high alert for spy activity from its east, as its membership of NATO makes it a strategic hotbed of security secrets from across the alliance.

A new report recently found that levels of Russian espionage in Lithuania and its two Baltic neighbours are currently at their highest since the Cold War.

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Getty images – E.A.P

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