Spy suspect ‘had fake UK passport’

One of the 10 people arrested in the US for allegedly serving in a Russian spy ring held a fake British passport, according to US government papers.

The FBI arrested 10 people accused of serving for years as secret agents of Russia’s intelligence service, the SVR, with the goal of penetrating US government policymaking circles.

US Department of Justice papers said Tracey Lee Ann Foley travelled on a “fraudulent British passport prepared for her by the SVR”. Foley was arrested in Boston on Monday.

A Foreign Office spokeswoman said: “We have seen the reports and, obviously, we will look into them.”

The 10 arrested are accused of conspiracy to act as unlawful agents of a foreign government. Nine of them also face a charge of conspiracy to launder money.

An 11th suspect named “Christopher R Metsos” was arrested on Tuesday in Cyprus.

It also emerged that one of the 10 was in contact with a subsidiary group of Oxford University.

Donald Howard Heathfield was in regular professional contact with Rafael Ramirez from the Oxford Futures Forum. Heathfield sold internet security and strategy programmes.

Mr Ramirez told a radio programme he had never suspected Heathfield of spying.

He said: “He came across as an American entrepreneur, quite an aggressive American entrepreneur, trying to work internationally. I’m either very, very bad at second guessing who is a Russian spy or he hid it very well.”

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