Russian man suspected of espionage ended up arrested at an IT conference in Oslo, Norway, over the weekend, officials said.
Law enforcement has not identified the suspect, but local media reports said he had identified himself as an adviser to Russia’s upper house of parliament. A spokesman for the Norwegian police said the suspect would be held for two weeks to keep him from destroying evidence.
On Sunday, the Russian Embassy in Norway issued a statement confirming the arrest had taken place at Oslo’s airport. He had been attending a seminar on digitalization at the Norwegian parliament, officials said.
“He was attending a job-related seminar; there were no other reasons other than business. I can say that his work is related to the conference that he attended in Oslo,” the man’s lawyer told Norwegian media. “They think there are some suspicious observations but apart from that, there is no clear-cut evidence to prove that he was collecting information.”
Various countries have been on alert because Russia has been accused of sending spies into numerous countries along its border and farther afield. Most recently, a 29-year-old Russian woman named Maria Butina was arrested in Washington and accused of attempting to infiltrate Republican political circles on behalf of Russia.