Medvedev says knew about Russian double agent

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President Dmitry Medvedev appeared to confirm Friday a newspaper report revealing that a Russian double agent helped the United States crack a major Russian spy ring this June.

"This was not news to me. I knew about it the day it happened," Medvedev told reporters on the sidelines of the G20 summit in the South Korean capital when asked about the Kommersant report.

The respected business daily on Thursday identified the Russian accomplice as Shcherbakov, a colonel with the Russian foreign intelligence service whose job was to plant civilian moles in the United States similar to the deep cover spy ring dismantled by Washington.

The group of 10 spies, many of whom had been working for years undercover in the United States as sleeper agents, returned to Russia in a July spy swap that saw Moscow send four Russian convicts to the West.

© 2010 AFP

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