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Estonian resident detained in Russia has criminal record in Estonia

May 13, 19:26 UTC+3 TALLINN
The Estonian web portal Delfi reports in 2013, Estonian resident Arsen Mardaleishvili, was found guilty of illegal trade in drugs and psychotropic substances
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© ITAR-TASS/Sergei Stepanov

TALLINN, May 13 /TASS/. Estonian resident Arsen Mardaleishvili (born 1969), who has been detained in St. Petersburg on suspicion of espionage, has a record in Estonia for administrative and criminals offences, the Estonian web portal Delfi reported on Friday.

In 2013, Arsen Mardaleishvili, who does not have the Estonian citizenship, was found guilty of illegal trade in drugs and psychotropic substances in small amounts. Estonian law enforcers arrested him for seven days. Judging from the court documents register, several penalties have been imposed on Mardaleishvili for violating the rules of rendering taxi services as well as for committing property offences. He has not paid any of the fines yet.

The Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) has detained a resident of Estonia in St. Petersburg for espionage, a source at the FSB public relations center told TASS on Friday.

"The Federal Security Service has detained Arsen Mardaleishvili (b.1969), who resides in Estonia but does not have the Estonian citizenship, in St. Petersburg on suspicion of espionage," the FSB source said.

According to the FSB, Mardaleishvili gathered military information, which could damage the state’s defensive capability if leaked abroad, for the Estonian Interior Ministry.

A criminal lawsuit has been filed against Mardaleishvili.

The Estonian Security Police said on Friday that they knew about Mardaleishvili’s detention in Russia.

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