Sweden charges man with spying for Russia on Sweden and the US

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Sweden charged a man on Monday with spying on it and the United States on behalf of Russia and unlawfully transferring advanced technology to Russia's armed forces over a nine-year period.

Prosecutors indicted Sergej Skvortsov, a citizen of both Sweden and Russia, on charges of gross unlawful intelligence activity against the two countries between 2013 and 2022, according to the indictment.

The 60-year-old's lawyer said he denied any wrongdoing. "He reiterates that he denies all charges," lawyer Ulrika Borg told Reuters.

Prosecutors said the suspect gathered information on behalf of Russia that could be detrimental to U.S. and Swedish security and provided Russia with technology it could not procure on the open market due to trade regulations and sanctions.

"Skvortsov and his company have been a platform for the Russian military intelligence service GRU and part of the Russian state for illicit technology procurement from the West," the indictment read.

The security service said in a statement the alleged crimes could pose serious security threats to Sweden and other states.

"The aim of the suspect's business has been to provide Russia with in-demand and sensitive technology that can be used militarily, where the goal of the procurement has been to increase the Russian state's military capabilities," it said.

Police arrested Skvortsov in November last year on the outskirts of Stockholm, together with a second individual who was released shortly after.

(Reporting by Anna Ringstrom; Editing by Terje Solsvik, Peter Graff and Andrew Heavens)