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Counterintelligence officer at Russian Embassy in Moldova accused of child molestation

The wives of Russian diplomats working at the embassy in Moldova have filed a complaint to Russia’s Investigative Committee about multiple cases of sexual harassment of their underage children. The list of victims includes the children of two diplomats and the son of a regular officer of the Scientific and Technical Intelligence of Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) working under the “protection” of the embassy. In their complaint to the Investigative Committee, the women demanded criminal liability for the diplomat officially employed as a cybersecurity consultant (his name was disclosed to The Insider).

As The Insider found out, the alleged perpetrator is an officer of the SVR Foreign Counterintelligence Directorate, whose task at the diplomatic mission was to counter foreign intelligence services. He graduated from the Moscow Higher Command School of Road and Engineering Troops, received training on information security at the Microinform Center, which trains personnel for Russian special services, among others, and was assigned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Before Moldova, the counterintelligence officer worked under diplomatic cover in Germany and Georgia. In Tbilisi, he pressed for friendship with Patriarch Ilia II.

According to The Insider's source at the Russian embassy in Chisinau, parents repeatedly complained about the “pedophile” to Ambassador Oleg Vasnetsov, but the latter only asked them to “leave him be until his retirement.” They are almost certain that «nobody needs this scandal now, and the case is likely to be swept under the rug.”

Image of the official notice to Russia's Investigative Committee on the collective complaint regarding cases of child molestation and other matters
Image of the official notice to Russia's Investigative Committee on the collective complaint regarding cases of child molestation and other matters

The counterintelligence officer categorically rejects the allegations of child molestation, calling them «complete fiction.” He is now in Moscow and knows that the Investigative Committee is conducting an investigation and that the parents' collective complaint is being monitored by the Prosecutor General's Office.

Another intelligence source familiar with the situation said that Russian intelligence services have become a “real cesspool” since over 300 “diplomats” from the GRU, SVR, and FSB were expelled from Europe: “Officers skipping work and going on benders, squabbles everywhere, everyone snitching on others and scheming against their peers.” The Insider's source doesn’t rule out the version that the counterintelligence officer could be the victim of a conspiracy.

This is not the first high-profile scandal at the Russian embassy in Chisinau. In 2020, journalists published an investigation into the Kremlin's interference in the Moldovan elections. It contained reports by then Moldovan President Igor Dodon on his service, which he secretly sent to Russian Ambassador Oleg Vasnetsov.

In 2023, after a joint investigation by The Insider and Jurnal TV (Moldova) about spies beneath the roof of the Russian embassy in Chisinau, a diplomatic scandal broke out and the authorities expelled 36 employees of the diplomatic mission.

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