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Russian Lawyer Charged With Espionage

A lawyer with dual Russian-Polish citizenship has been charged with espionage in Poland, Polish media say. The man, named only as Stanislaw Sz, is the son of a Russian national goalkeeper who moved to Poland in 1991.

Mr Sz was arrested in October 2014 but released after three months. He could face up to 10 years in jail.

Russian-Polish relations have worsened since Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014, and its alleged involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine. Prosecutors told Polish media that a criminal case had been opened against Mr Sz, whose full name has not been revealed under Polish privacy laws. He is accused of “participation in the activities of foreign intelligence against the Republic of Poland”.

Mr Sz’s work as a lawyer in a Warsaw-based consulting company included overseeing the building of a liquefied natural gas terminal in the north-western port city of Swinoujscie, according to the reports. He has also taken part in committee sessions in the Polish parliament about the energy sector.

His arrest in 2014 coincided with that of a Polish army colonel suspected of receiving money in return for supplying information, possibly on the mood within the Polish military. The incident led to a diplomatic row, with a Russian diplomat expelled for contact with the colonel and four Polish diplomats expelled from Moscow in response.

Both men were said to have been recruited by Russian military intelligence.