The United States Department of Justice has accused a Russian individual of trying to infiltrate the International Criminal Court, which issued an international arrest warrant against Vladimir Putin last week. In the indictment filed against Sergey Vladimirovich Cherkasov, the American authorities write that they are trying to prevent the man with a fake Brazilian identity from being transported from Brazil to Russia. Because the authorities of the South American country are negotiating to extradite the person suspected of espionage to Moscow because of a drug case – it turns out Moscow Times from his article.
The 39-year-old Cherkasov was detained by the Dutch authorities at the beginning of April 2022 for using false identity documents: he came to the country under the name of Brazilian Viktor Muller Ferreira to take up a position as a junior analyst at the ICC.
However, the Dutch police determined that he was not a Brazilian, but an agent of the GRU military intelligence in Moscow.
According to the American indictment and the resume published by the authorities on the Internet, Cherkasov was not active and built his new identity undercover. This included attending the 2018-2020 Master’s Program in International Studies at Johns Hopkins University in Washington, DC.
According to the Dutch, if Chersakov had worked at the International Criminal Court, he could have obtained “extremely valuable” information about the war crimes investigation in Ukraine, or even influenced the criminal proceedings of the Hague-based court. The Dutch authorities therefore handed him over to their partners in Brazil, as his fake papers told him, and here he was charged with possession of a false identity, for which Chersakov was sentenced to 15 years in prison in July.
But in September, Moscow formally asked Brazil to extradite him to Russia, where he was allegedly wanted for drug trafficking.
The US Department of Justice charged him with illegally acting as an agent of a foreign power while in the US. They said that while he was studying in Washington, he collected information about unknown Americans, which he passed on to his clients, the department said.
He was also charged with visa fraud, bank fraud, wire fraud and other charges related to his activities in the United States. The extradition dispute could lead to a diplomatic conflict between the USA, Brazil and Russia.
Cover image: Getty Images.
Leave a Comment