Lugovoi Claims Brits Killed Litvinenko

Accused Russian says poisoned expat was a British agent killed by his handlers
By Sam Gale Rosen,  Newser Staff
Posted May 31, 2007 9:18 AM CDT
Russian businessman Andrei Lugovoi holds papers during a news conference in Moscow, Thursday, May 31, 2007. The Russian businessman whom Britain has named as a suspect in the killing of ex-KGB agent Alexander...   (Associated Press)

(Newser) – The man Britain has charged with killing former KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko says that British Intelligence is behind the poisoning. At a dramatic news conference yesterday, Andrei Lugovoi, also former KGB, claimed that Litvinenko was a British agent who was killed by his handlers. And he accused Boris Berezovsky, a Russian expat critical of Putin, of being complicit.

Lugovoi said he, too, had been recruited by Birtish intelligence to help in a campaign to discrdit Putin, and he was now being scapegoated as "a kind of Russian James Bondwho climbs inside a nuclear reactor and then poisons his Russian friend." Litvinenko died of exposure to the radioactive isotope polonium-210. Berezovsky said Lugovoi's claims smack of Kremlin orchestration. (Read more Alexander Litvinenko stories.)