A former Swedish intelligence officer has been sentenced to life imprisonment after being found guilty of spying for Russia for more than a decade.
Peyman Kia, 42, served in the Swedish security and counter-intelligence service, Säpo, and in armed forces intelligence agencies, according to the Guardian. Kia’s brother, Payam Kia, 35, was sentenced to nine years and 10 months. The brothers were born in Iran.
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The brothers faced charges of gross espionage for having worked to pass information to Russia between Sept. 28, 2011, and Sept. 20, 2021, NBC News reported. The judge in the case, Måns Wigén, reportedly said Peyman Kia had abused the trust placed in him in order to aid Russia, the country posing “the biggest threat to Sweden.”
Wigén said the motive was money, and NBC reported that Peyman Kia acquired about 90 documents while Payam Kia acquired about 65 documents.
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Sweden applied to join NATO last year after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, much to Russia’s frustration. However, NATO holdouts such as Turkey are disabling Sweden and its neighbor Finland from joining the alliance.