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How Vladimir Putin Murdered Litvinenko.

Book of Jeremiah

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Nov 3, 2012
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Alexander Litvinenko was a former officer of the Russian Federal Security Service, FSB and KGB, who fled from court prosecution in Russia and received political asylum in the United Kingdom. According to his wife and father, he was working for MI6 and MI5 after receiving the asylum.

Upon his arrival to London, he continued to support the Russian oligarch in exile, Boris Berezovsky, in his media campaign against the Russian government.[1]

In the UK, Litvinenko became a journalist for a Chechen separatist site, Chechenpress. Litvinenko wrote two books, Blowing up Russia: Terror from within and Lubyanka Criminal Group, where he accused the Russian secret services of staging Russian apartment bombings and other terrorism acts to bring Vladimir Putin to power.

On 1 November 2006, Litvinenko suddenly fell ill and was hospitalized. He died three weeks later, becoming the first confirmed victim of lethal polonium-210-induced acute radiation syndrome.[2] According to doctors, "Litvinenko's murder represents an ominous landmark: the beginning of an era of nuclear terrorism".[3][4][5]

Litvinenko's allegations about the misdeeds of the FSB and his public deathbed accusations that Russian president Vladimir Putin were behind his unusual malady resulted in worldwide media coverage.[6]

Subsequent investigations by British authorities into the circumstances of Litvinenko's death led to serious diplomatic difficulties between the British and Russian governments. Unofficially, British authorities asserted that "we are 100% sure who administered the poison, where and how", but they did not disclose their evidence in the interest of a future trial. The main suspect in the case, a former officer of the Russian Federal Protective Service (FSO), Andrei Lugovoy, remains in Russia. As a member of the Duma, he now enjoys immunity from prosecution. Before he was elected to the Duma, the British government tried to extradite him without success.

At the same time, Litvinenko's father, now residing in Italy, believes Boris Berezovsky and Alexander Goldfarb were behind the murder.[7][8]

Contents [hide]
1 Background
2 Illness and poisoning
2.1 Poison
2.2 Po-210 concentration in the body of Litvinenko
2.3 Thallium ¨C initial hypothesis
3 Death and last statement
4 Investigation
4.1 Initial steps
4.2 Polonium trails
4.3 British extradition request
4.4 Extradition declined
4.5 BBC programme
5 Possibly related events
6 Polonium-210
6.1 Sources and production of polonium
6.2 Possible motivation for using polonium-210
7 Theories
8 Suspects
9 Other persons related to the case
10 Chronology
10.1 Background history
10.2 2006
10.2.1 October 2006
10.2.2 November 2006
10.2.3 December 2006
10.3 2007
10.3.1 February 2007
10.3.2 May 2007
10.3.3 July 2007
10.3.4 October 2007
10.3.5 December 2008
11 Comparisons to other deaths
11.1 Deaths from ingesting radioactive materials
11.2 Suspicious deaths of people involved in Russian politics
12 References in popular culture
13 See also
14 References
15 External links

: Alexander Litvinenko
Alexander Litvinenko was a former officer of the Russian Federal Security service who escaped prosecution in Russia and received political asylum in Great Britain. In his books, "Blowing up Russia: Terror from within" and "Lubyanka Criminal Group", Litvinenko described Vladimir Putin's rise to power as a coup d'¨¦tat organised by the FSB. He alleged that a key element of FSB's strategy was to frighten Russians by bombing apartment buildings in Moscow and other Russian cities.[9] He accused Russian secret services of having arranged the Moscow theater hostage crisis, through their Chechen agent provocateur, and having organised the 1999 Armenian parliament shooting.[10] He also stated that terrorist Ayman al-Zawahiri was under FSB control when he visited Russia in 1997.[11]

Just two weeks before his death Litvinenko accused Russian president Vladimir Putin of ordering the assassination of Anna Politkovskaya.[12]

[edit] Illness and poisoningOn 1 November 2006, Litvinenko suddenly fell ill. Earlier that day he had met two former KGB officers, Andrei Lugovoi and Dmitri Kovtun. Lugovoi is a former bodyguard of Russian ex-Prime Minister Yegor Gaidar (also reportedly poisoned in November 2006) and former chief of security for the Russian TV channel ORT. Kovtun is now a businessman. Litvinenko had also had lunch at Itsu, a sushi restaurant on Piccadilly in London, with an Italian acquaintance and "nuclear waste expert", Mario Scaramella, to whom he reportedly made allegations regarding Romano Prodi's connections with the KGB.[13] Scaramella, attached to the Mitrokhin Commission investigating KGB penetration of Italian politics, claimed to have information on the death of Anna Politkovskaya, 48, a journalist who was killed at her Moscow apartment in October 2006. He passed Litvinenko papers supposedly concerning her fate. On 20 November, it was reported that Scaramella had gone into hiding and feared for his life.[14]

For several days after 1 November, Litvinenko experienced severe diarrhea and vomiting. At one point, he could not walk without assistance. As the pain intensified, Litvinenko begged his wife to call an ambulance for assistance.[15] For several weeks, Litvinenko's condition worsened as doctors searched for what caused the illness. Surrounded by friends, Litvinenko began to become physically weak, and spent periods unconscious. A photograph was taken of Litvinenko in his death bed and released to the public. "I want the world to see what they did to me," Litvinenko said.[15]

[edit] PoisonShortly after his death, the UK's Health Protection Agency (HPA) stated that tests had established Litvinenko had significant amounts of the radionuclide polonium-210 (210Po) in his body. British and US government sources both said the use of 210Po as a poison had never been documented before, and this was probably the first time a person has been tested for the presence of 210Po in his or her body. The poison was in Litvinenko's tea cup.[16] People who had contact with Litvinenko may also have been exposed to radiation.[17][18]

Polonium was identified only after Litvinenko's death, on 23 November. Doctors and Scotland Yard investigators could not detect polonium earlier because it does not emit gamma rays, which are encountered with most radioactive isotopes. Unlike most common radiation sources, polonium-210 emits only alpha particles that do not penetrate even a sheet of paper or the epidermis of human skin, thus being invisible to normal radiation detectors in this case. Hospitals only have equipment to detect gamma rays. Both gamma rays and alpha particles are classified as ionizing radiation which can cause radiation damage. An alpha-emitting substance can cause significant damage only if ingested or inhaled, acting on living cells like a short-range weapon.[19] Litvinenko was tested for alpha-emitters using special equipment only hours before his death.[19]

[edit] Po-210 concentration in the body of LitvinenkoThe symptoms seen in Litvinenko appeared consistent with an administered activity of approximately 2 GBq (50 mCi) which corresponds to about 10 micrograms of 210Po. That is 200 times the median lethal dose of around 238 ¦ÌCi or 50 nanograms in the case of ingestion.[20]

[edit] Thallium ¨C initial hypothesisScotland Yard initially investigated claims that Litvinenko was poisoned with thallium. It was reported that early tests appeared to confirm the presence of the poison.[21][22] Among the distinctive effects of thallium poisoning are hair loss and damage to peripheral nerves,[23] and a photograph of Litvinenko in hospital, released to the media on his behalf,[24] indeed showed his hair to have fallen out. Litvinenko attributed his initial survival to his cardiovascular fitness and swift medical treatment. It was later suggested a radioactive isotope of thallium might have been used to poison Litvinenko.[25] Dr. Amit Nathwani, one of Litvinenko's physicians, said "His symptoms are slightly odd for thallium poisoning, and the chemical levels of thallium we were able to detect are not the kind of levels you'd see in toxicity."[26] Litvinenko's condition deteriorated, and he was moved into intensive care on 20 November. Hours before his death, three unidentified circular-shaped objects were found in his stomach via an X-ray scan.[27] It is thought these objects were almost certainly shadows caused by the presence of Prussian blue, the treatment he had been given for thallium poisoning.[23][28]

[edit] Death and last statement
Grave of Alexander Litvinenko at Highgate CemeteryLate on 22 November and into the early morning of 23 November, Litvinenko's heart failed. The official time of death was 9:21 P.M.at University College Hospital in London.[29]

Litvinenko's autopsy took place on 1 December.[30] Litvinenko had ingested polonium-210, a poisonous radioactive isotope.[2] Mario Scaramella, who had eaten with Litvinenko, reported that doctors had told him Litvinenko's body had five times the lethal dose of polonium-210.[2] Litvinenko's funeral reading took place on 7 December at the Central London mosque, after which his body was buried at Highgate Cemetery in North London.[31]

On 25 November, an article attributed to Litvinenko was published by the Mail on Sunday Online entitled Why I believe Putin wanted me dead...[6]

In his last statement he said about Putin:

...this may be the time to say one or two things to the person responsible for my present condition. You may succeed in silencing me but that silence comes at a price. You have shown yourself to be as barbaric and ruthless as your most hostile critics have claimed. You have shown yourself to have no respect for life, liberty or any civilised value. You have shown yourself to be unworthy of your office, to be unworthy of the trust of civilised men and women. You may succeed in silencing one man but the howl of protest from around the world will reverberate, Mr Putin, in your ears for the rest of your life. May God forgive you for what you have done, not only to me but to beloved Russia and its people.[32]

[edit] Investigation[edit] Initial stepsGreater London's Metropolitan Police Service Terrorism Unit has been investigating the poisoning and death. The head of the Counter-Terrorism Unit, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Peter Clarke, stated the police "will trace possible witnesses, examine Mr. Litvinenko's movements at relevant times, including when he first became ill and identify people he may have met. There will also be an extensive examination of CCTV footage."[33] The United Kingdom Government COBRA committee met to discuss the investigation.[34] Richard Kolko from the United States FBI stated "when requested by other nations, we provide assistance" ¨C referring to the FBI now joining the investigation for their expertise on radioactive weapons.[35][36] The Metropolitan Police announced on 6 December 2006 that it was treating Litvinenko's death as murder.[37] Interpol has also joined the investigation, providing "speedy exchange of information" between British, Russian and German police.[38]

[edit] Polonium trailsDetectives traced three distinct polonium trails in and out of London. The trails were left by Litvinenko, Andrei Lugovoi and Dmitry Kovtun. The patterns and levels of radioactivity they left behind suggested that Litvinenko ingested polonium, whereas Lugovoi and Kovtun handled it directly.[39] The human body dilutes polonium before excreting it in sweat, which results in a reduced radioactivity level. There were also traces of Po-210 found at the "Hey Jo/Abracadabra" bar, "Dar Marrakesh" restaurant, and Lambeth-Mercedes taxis.[40]

The poisoning of Litvinenko took place at around 5 pm of 1 November in the Millennium Hotel in Grosvenor Square. The bus he travelled in to the hotel had no signs of radioactivity ¨C but large amounts had been detected at the hotel.[41] Polonium was subsequently found in a fourth-floor room and in a cup in the Pine Bar at the hotel.[42] After the Millennium bar, Litvinenko stopped at the office of Boris Berezovsky. He used a fax machine, where the radioactivity was found later. At 6 pm Akhmed Zakayev picked Litvinenko up and brought him home to Muswell Hill. The amount of radioactivity left by Litvinenko in the car was so significant, the car was rendered unusable.[39] Everything that he touched at home during next three days was contaminated. His family was unable to return to the house even six months later. His wife was tested positive for ingesting polonium but did not leave a secondary trail behind her. This suggested that anyone who left a trail could not have picked up the polonium from Litvinenko (possibly, including Lugovoy and Kovtun).[39]

Besides Litvinenko, only two people left the polonium trails: Lugovoy and Kovtun who were school friends and worked previously for Russian intelligence in the KGB and the GRU respectively.[39] These people handled the radioactive material directly and did not ingest it, because they left more significant traces of polonium than Litvinenko.[39]

Lugovoy and Kovtun met Litvinenko in the Millennium hotel bar twice, on 1 November (when the poisoning took place), and earlier, on 16 October. Trails left by Lugovoy and Kovtun started on 16 October, in the same sushi bar where Litvinenko was poisoned later, but at a different table. It was assumed that their first meeting with Litvinenko was either a rehearsal of the future poisoning, or an unsuccessful attempt of the poisoning.[39]

Traces left by Lugovoy were also found in the office of Berezovsky that he visited on 31 October, a day before his second meeting with Litvinenko. Traces left by Kovtun were found in Hamburg, Germany. He left them on his way to London on 28 October.[39] The traces were found in passenger jets[43][44] BA875 and BA873 from Moscow to Heathrow on 25 and 31 October, as well as flights BA872 and BA874 from Heathrow to Moscow on 28 October and 3 November.[45][46]

Andrei Lugovoi has said he flew from London to Moscow on a 3 November flight. He stated he arrived in London on 31 October to attend the football match between Arsenal and CSKA Moscow on 1 November.[47] When the news broke that a radioactive substance had been used to murder Litvinenko, a team of scientists rushed to find out how far the contamination had spread. It led them on a trail involving hundreds of people and dozens of locations.[48]

British Airways later published a list of 221 flights of the contaminated aircraft, involving around 33,000 passengers, and advised those potentially affected to contact the UK Department of Health for help. On 5 December they issued an email to all of their customers, informing them that the aircraft had all been declared safe by the UK's Health Protection Agency and would be entering back into service.

[edit] British extradition requestBritish authorities investigated the death and it was reported on 1 December that scientists at the Atomic Weapons Establishment had traced the source of the polonium to a nuclear power plant in Russia. On 3 December, reports stated that Britain has demanded the right to speak to at least five Russians implicated in Litvinenko's death, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov asserted that Moscow was willing to answer "concrete questions."[49] Russian Prosecutor-General Yuri Chaika said on Tuesday, 5 December that any Russian citizen who may be charged in the poisoning will be tried in Russia, not Britain.[50] Moreover, Chaika stated that UK detectives may ask questions to Russian citizens only in the presence of Russian prosecutors.[51]

On 28 May 2007 the British Foreign Office submitted a formal request to the Russian Government for the extradition of Andrei Lugovoi to the UK to face criminal charges relating to Litvinenko's murder.[52]

[edit] Extradition declinedThe Russian General Prosecutor's Office declined to extradite Lugovoi, citing that extradition of citizens is not allowed under the Russian constitution (Article 61 of the Constitution of Russia).[53][54][55] Russian authorities later said that Britain has not handed over any evidence against Lugovoi.[56][57] Professor Daniel Tarschys, former Secretary General of the Council of Europe, commented[58] that the Russian Constitution actually "opens the door" for the extradition, and Russia ratified three international treaties on extradition (on 10 December 1999); namely, the European Convention on Extradition[59] and two Additional Protocols[60][61][62] to it. Yury Fedotov, Ambassador of the Russian Federation, pointed out that when the Russian Federation ratified the European Convention on Extradition it entered a declaration[63] concerning Article 6 in these terms: "The Russian Federation declares that in accordance with Article 61 (part 1) of the Constitution of the Russian Federation, a citizen of the Russian Federation may not be extradited to another state."[64] The same protections are extended to the citizens of France and Germany, both of which refuse to extradite their citizens.[citation needed]

[edit] BBC programmeOn 7 July 2008, a British security source told the BBC's Newsnight programme: "We very strongly believe the Litvinenko case to have had some state involvement. There are very strong indications."[65] The British government claimed that no intelligence or security officials were authorised to comment on the case.[66][67]

[edit] Possibly related eventsOn 2 March 2007 Paul Joyal, a former director of security for the U.S. Senate intelligence committee, who the previous weekend alleged on national television that the Kremlin was involved in the poisoning of Litvinenko, was shot near his Maryland home. An FBI spokesman said the agency was "assisting" the police investigation into the shooting. Police would not confirm details of the shooting or of the condition of Joyal. A person familiar with the case said he was in critical condition in hospital. It was reported that while there were no indications that the shooting was linked to the Litvinenko case, it is unusual for the FBI to get involved in a local shooting incident. A person familiar with the situation said NBC had hired bodyguards for some of the journalists involved in the program.[68]

[edit] Polonium-210[edit] Sources and production of poloniumA freelance killer would not be able to obtain polonium legally from commercially available products in the amounts used for Litvinenko poisoning, because more than microscopic amounts of polonium can only be produced in state-controlled nuclear reactors.[39][69] (see also commercial products containing polonium for detail).

Ninety seven percent of the world's legal polonium-210 (210Po) production occurs in Russia in RBMK reactors[39][70] About 85 grams (450,000 Ci) are produced by Russia annually. According to Sergei Kiriyenko, the head of Russia's state atomic energy agency, RosAtom, all of it goes to U.S. companies through a single authorized supplier. The production of polonium starts from bombardment of bismuth (209Bi) with neutrons at the Ozersk nuclear reactor, near the city of Chelyabinsk in Russia. The product is then transferred to the Avangard Electromechanical Plant in the closed city of Sarov.[39][71][72][73] This of course does not exclude the possibility that the polonium that killed Litvinenko was imported by a licensed commercial distributor, but no one¡ªincluding the Russian government¡ªhas proposed that this is likely, particularly in regard to the radiation detected on the British Airways passenger jets travelling between Moscow and London.[citation needed] Russian investigators have said they could not identify the source of polonium.[74]

Polonium-210 has a half-life of 138 days and decays to the stable daughter isotope of lead, 206Pb. Therefore the source is reduced to about one sixteenth of its original radioactivity about 18 months after production. By measuring the proportion of polonium and lead in a sample, one can establish the production date of polonium. The analysis of impurities in the polonium (a kind of "finger print") allows to identify the place of production.[75] It is assumed by Litvinenko's wife and his close confidant that British investigators were able to identify the place and time of production of polonium used to poison Litvinenko, but their findings remain unpublished.[39]

[edit] Possible motivation for using polonium-210Philip Walker, professor of physics at the University of Surrey said: "This seems to have been a substance carefully chosen for its ability to be hard to detect in a person who has ingested it."[76] Oleg Gordievsky, the most senior KGB agent ever to defect to Britain, made a similar comment that Litvinenko's assassination was carefully prepared and rehearsed by Russian secret services,[77] but the poisoners were unaware that technology existed to detect traces left by polonium-210: "Did you know that polonium-210 leaves traces? I didn¡¯t. And no one did. ...what they didn¡¯t know was that this equipment, this technology exists in the West ¨C they didn¡¯t know that, and that was where they miscalculated."[77]

Nick Priest, a nuclear scientist and expert on polonium who has worked at most of Russia's nuclear research facilities, says that although the execution of the plot was a "bout of stupidity", the choice of polonium was a "stroke of genius". He says: "the choice of poison was genius in that polonium, carried in a vial in water, can be carried in a pocket through airport screening devices without setting off any alarms", adding, "once administered, the polonium creates symptoms that don't suggest poison for days, allowing time for the perpetrator to make a getaway." Priest asserts that "whoever did it was probably not an expert in radiation protection, so they probably didn't realize how much contamination you can get just by opening the top (of the vial) and closing it again. With the right equipment, you can detect just one count per second".[78]

Filmmaker and friend of Litvinenko, Andrei Nekrasov, has suggested that the poison was "sadistically designed to trigger a slow, tortuous and spectacular demise".[79] Expert on Russia Paul Joyal suggested that "A message has been communicated to anyone who wants to speak out against the Kremlin.... If you do, no matter who you are, where you are, we will find you, and we will silence you, in the most horrible way possible".[80]

[edit] TheoriesMain article: Alexander Litvinenko assassination theories
Many theories of Litvinenko poisoning circulated after his death. Many circumstances led to suspicion that he was killed by the Russian secret service.[81] Viktor Ilyukhin, a deputy chairman of the Russian Parliament's security committee for the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, said that he "can¡¯t exclude that possibility"[82] He apparently referred to a recent Russian counter-terrorism law that gives the President the right to order such actions.[83][84] An investigator of the Russian apartment bombings, Mikhail Trepashkin wrote in a letter from prison that an FSB team had organised in 2002 to kill Litvinenko. He also reported FSB plans to kill relatives of Litvinenko in Moscow in 2002, although these have not been carried out.[85][86] State Duma member Sergei Abeltsev commented on 24 November 2006:[87] said: "The deserved punishment reached the traitor. I am confident that this terrible death will be a serious warning to traitors of all colors, wherever they are located: In Russia, they do not pardon treachery. I would recommend citizen Berezovsky to avoid any food at the commemoration for his accomplice Litvinenko."

Many publications in Russian media suggested that the death of Litvinenko was connected to Boris Berezovsky.[88][89] Former FSB chief Nikolay Kovalyov, for whom Litvinenko worked, said that the incident "looks like [the] hand of Berezovsky. I am sure that no kind of intelligence services participated."[90] This involvement of Berezovsky was alleged by numerous Russian television shows.

An explanation put forward by the Russian Government appeared to be that the deaths of Litvinenko and Politkovskaya were intended to embarrass President Putin. Other theories included involvement of rogue FSB members[91] or suggestions that Litvinenko was killed because of his research of certain Russian corporations or state officials,[92][93] or as a political intrigue to undermine president Putin[94]

[edit] SuspectsAndrei Lugovoi
A former Federal Protective Service of Russia officer and millionaire who met with Litvinenko on the day he fell ill (1 November). He had visited London at least three times in the month before Litvinenko's death and met with the victim four times. Traces of polonium-210 have been discovered in all three hotels where Lugovoi stayed after flying to London on 16 October, and in the Pescatori restaurant in Dover Street, Mayfair, where Mr Lugovoi is understood to have dined before 1 November; and aboard two aircraft on which he had travelled.[95][96] He has declined to say whether he had been contaminated with polonium-210.[97] The Crown Prosecution Service has charged him with murder and has sent an extradition request to Russia that includes a summary of the evidence, but the only third party to have seen the extradition request, American journalist Edward Epstein, has described the substantiation as "embarrassingly thin".[98][99]
Dmitry Kovtun
A Russian businessman and ex-KGB agent who met Litvinenko in London first in mid-October and then on 1 November, the day Litvinenko fell ill. On 7 December Kovtun was hospitalized, with some sources initially reporting him to be in coma.[100] On 9 December, German police found traces of radiation at a Hamburg flat used by Kovtun.[101] The following day, 10 December, German investigators identified the detected material as polonium-210 and clarified that the substance was found where Kovtun had slept the night before departing for London. British police also report having detected polonium on the plane in which Kovtun travelled from Moscow.[102] Three other points in Hamburg were identified as contaminated with the same substance.[103] On 12 December Kovtun told Russia's Channel One TV that his "health was improving".[38]
Kovtun was under investigation by German detectives for suspected plutonium smuggling into Germany in October.[38] Germany dropped the case against Kovtun on November 2009 [2]
Vyacheslav Sokolenko
A business partner of Andrei Lugovoi.[104]
The Times stated that the police have identified the man they believe may have poisoned Litvinenko with a fatal polonium dose in a cup of tea on the fourth-floor room at the Millennium Hotel to discuss a business deal with Dmitry Kovtun and Andrei Lugovoi before going to the bar. These three men were joined in the room later by the mystery figure who was introduced as Vladislav, a man, who could help Litvinenko win a lucrative contract with a Moscow-based private security firm.[105]
Vladislav is said to have arrived in London from Hamburg on 1 November on the same flight as Dmitry Kovtun. His image is recorded by security cameras at Heathrow airport on arrival. He is described as being in his early 30s, tall, strong, with short black hair and Central Asian features. Oleg Gordievsky, an ex-KGB agent, has said that this man was believed to have used a Lithuanian or Slovak passport, and that he left the country using another EU passport. He has also said Vladislav started his preparations in early 2006, "some time between February and April", that he "travelled to London, walked everywhere, and studied everything."[106]
Businessman and politician Boris Berezovsky said in a police interview that "Sasha mentioned some person who he met at Millennium Hotel", but would not "remember whether [his name] was Vladimir or Vyacheslav."[107] Litvinenko's friend Alex Goldfarb writes that according to Litvinenko, "Lugovoy brought along a man whom [Litvinenko] had never seen before and who had 'the eyes of a killer.'"[108]
Igor the Assassin
The code name for a former KGB assassin. He is said to be a former Spetznaz officer born in 1960 who is a Judo master and walks with a slight limp. He allegedly speaks perfect English and Portuguese and may be the same person who served Litvinenko tea in the London hotel room.[109]
Leonid Nevzlin
A businessman living in Israel has been accused by Russian Procurator's office of links to several murders in Russia and was one of the key figures in the Yukos oil company.[110]
Vladimir Putin
[edit] Other persons related to the caseYegor Gaidar
The sudden illness of Yegor Gaidar in Ireland on 24 November, the day of Litvinenko's death, has been linked to his visit to the restaurant where polonium was present and is being investigated as part of the overall investigation in the UK and Ireland.,[111] Other observers noted he was probably poisoned after drinking a strange-tasting cup of tea. Gaidar was taken to hospital; doctors said his condition is not life-threatening and that he will recover.[112][113] This incident was similar to the poisoning of Anna Politkovskaya on a flight to Beslan. After poisoning, Gaidar claimed that it was enemies of Kremlin who tried to poison him.
Mario Scaramella
The United Kingdom's Health Protection Agency (HPA) announced that significant quantities of polonium-210 had been found in Mario Scaramella although his health was found to be normal. He has been admitted to hospital for tests and monitoring.[114] Doctors say that Scaramella was exposed to a much lower level of polonium-210 than Litvinenko had been exposed to, and that preliminary tests found "no evidence of radiation toxicity".[115] According to the 6 pm Channel 4 (9 December 2006) news the intake of polonium he suffered will only result in a dose of 1 mSv. This will lead to a 1 in 20000 chance of cancer. According to The Independent, Scaramella alleged that Litvinenko was involved in smuggling radioactive material to Z¨¹rich in 2000.[116]
Boris Volodarsky, a KGB defector residing in London, stated that Evgeni Limarev, another former KGB officer residing in France, continued collaboration with FSB, infiltrated Litvinenko's and Scaramella's circles of trust and misinformed the latter.[117][118][119]
Igor Ponomarev
Igor Ponomarev was a Russian diplomat whose death was named a possible murder by Paolo Guzzanti[119]
Marina Litvinenko
UK reports state Litvinenko's widow tested positive for polonium, though she is not seriously ill. The Ashdown Park hotel in Sussex has been evacuated as a precaution, possibly to do with Scaramella's previous visit there.[120] According to the 6 pm Channel 4 (9 December 2006) news the intake of polonium she suffered will only result in a dose of 100 mSv. This will lead to a 1 in 200 chance of cancer.
Akhmed Zakayev
The forensic investigation also includes the silver Mercedes by Litvinenko's home believed to be owned by his close friend and neighbour Akhmed Zakayev, then foreign minister of the separatist government in exile of Ichkeria.[121][122][123] Reports now state that traces of radioactive material were found in the vehicle.[124]
British Police
Two London Metropolitan police officers tested positive for 210Po poisoning.[125]
Bar staff
Some of the bar staff at the hotel where the polonium contaminated teacup was found were discovered to have suffered an intake of polonium (dose in the range of 10s of mSv). These people include Norberto Andrade, the head barman of the bar and a long-time (27 years) worker at the hotel. He has described the situation thus:
"When I was delivering gin and tonic to the table, I was obstructed. I couldn't see what was happening, but it seemed very deliberate to create a distraction. It made it difficult to put the drink down."
"It was the only moment when the situation seemed unfriendly and something went on at that point. I think the polonium was sprayed into the teapot. There was contamination found on the picture above where Mr Litvinenko had been sitting and all over the table, chair and floor, so it must have been a spray."
"When I poured the remains of the teapot into the sink, the tea looked more yellow than usual and was thicker ¨C it looked gooey."
"I scooped it out of the sink and threw it into the bin. I was so lucky I didn't put my fingers into my mouth, or scratch my eye as I could have got this poison inside me."[16]
[edit] Chronology[edit] Background history7 June 1994: A remote-controlled bomb detonated aiming at chauffeured Mercedes 600 with oligarch Boris Berezovsky and his bodyguard in the rear seat. Driver died but Berezovsky left the car unscathed. Litvinenko, then with the organized-crime unit of the FSB, was an investigating officer of the assassination attempt. The case was never solved, but it was at this point that Litvinenko befriended Berezovsky.
17 November 1998: At a time that Vladimir Putin was the head of the FSB, five officers including Lieutenant-Colonel Litvinenko accuse the Director of the Directorate for the Analysis of Criminal Organizations Major-General Eugeny Hoholkhov and his deputy, 1st Rank Captain Alexander Kamishnikov, of ordering them to assassinate Boris Berezovsky in November 1997.
[edit] 2006[edit] October 20067 October: The Russian journalist and Kremlin critic Anna Politkovskaya is shot in Moscow.
16 October: Andrei Lugovoi flies to London.
16¨C18 October: Former KGB agent Dmitry Kovtun visits London, during which time he eats two meals with Litvinenko, one of them at the Itsu sushi bar (see 1 November 2006).[100][126]
17 October: Litvinenko visits "Risc Management", a security firm in Cavendish Place, with Lugovoi and Kovtun.[127]
19 October: Litvinenko accuses President Putin of the Politkovskaya murder.
28 October: Dmitry Kovtun arrived in Hamburg, Germany from Moscow on an Aeroflot flight. Later German police discovered that the passenger seat of the car that picked him up at an airport was contaminated with Polonium-210.
31 October: Dmitry Kovtun comes to London from Hamburg, Germany. German police found that his ex-wife's apartment in Hamburg was contaminated with polonium-210.[128]
[edit] November 20061 November: Just after 3 pm, at the Itsu sushi restaurant on Picadilly, Litvinenko meets the Italian security expert Mario Scaramella, who hands alleged evidence to him concerning the murder of Politkovskaya. Around 4:15 pm, he comes to the office of Boris Berezovsky to copy the papers Scaramella had given him and hand them to Berezovsky. Around 5 pm he meets with the former KGB agents Andrei Lugovoi, Dmitry Kovtun and Vyacheslav Sokolenko in the Millennium Hotel in London. He later becomes ill.[129][130]
3 November: Litvinenko is brought into Barnet General Hospital.
11 November: Litvinenko tells the BBC he was poisoned and is in very bad condition.
17 November: Litvinenko is moved to University College Hospital and placed under armed guard.
19 November: Reports emerge that Litvinenko has been poisoned with thallium, a chemical element used in the past as a rat poison.
20 November: Litvinenko is moved to the Intensive Care Unit. The police take statements from people with close relation to Litvinenko. A Kremlin speaker denies the Russian government is involved in the poisoning.
22 November: The hospital announces that Litvinenko's condition has worsened substantially.
23 November: 9:21 pm: Litvinenko dies.
24 November: Litvinenko's dictated deathbed statement is published. He accuses President Vladimir Putin of being responsible for his death. The Kremlin rejects the accusation. The HPA announces that significant amounts of Polonium-210 have been found in Litvinenko's body. Traces of the same substance are also found at Litvinenko's house in North London, at Itsu and at the Millennium Hotel.
24 November: Sergei Abeltsev, State Duma member from the LDPR, in his Duma address he commented on the death of Litvinenko with the following words: The deserved punishment reached the traitor. I am sure his terrible death will be a warning to all the traitors that in Russia the treason is not to be forgiven. I would recommend to citizen Berezovsky to avoid any food at the commemoration for his crime accomplice Litvinenko[87]
24 November: The British police state they are investigating the death as a possible poisoning.
28 November: Scotland Yard announces that traces of Polonium-210 have been found in seven different places in London. Among them, an office of the Russian billionaire Boris Berezovsky, an avowed opponent of Putin.
29 November: The HPA announces screening of the nurses and physicians who treated Litvinenko. The authorities find traces of a radioactive substance on board British Airways planes.
30 November: Polonium-210 traces are found on a number of other planes, most of them going to Moscow.

See Wiki for remainder of story about autopsy - or google how Putin Murdered Litvinenko. Interesting note* It is common knowledge in Russia that Putin murdered his political opponent. Of course, Litvinenko said so on his death bed. Putin had him poisoned to death. No one doubts Putin is a vicious murderer and yet Obama tells us this guy is our new best friend. Do you trust Vladmir Putin? Really??
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Wise ol' monkey
Feb 6, 2011
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Okolona, KY
Granny says dem Commie spies pro'bly sprayed him with radiation...
UK police: Russian tycoon Berezovsky found dead
Mar 23,`13 -- Boris Berezovsky, a self-exiled and outspoken Russian tycoon who had a bitter falling out with Russian President Vladimir Putin, was found dead in southeast England on Saturday. He was 67.
In recent years, the one-time Kremlin powerbroker-turned-thorn in Putin's side fended off verbal and legal attacks in cases that often bore political undertones - and bit into his fortune. The cause of Berezovsky's death was not immediately clear, and Thames Valley police said it was being treated as "unexplained." The police would not directly identify him, but when asked about Berezovsky by name they read a statement saying they were investigating the death of a 67-year-old man at a property in Ascot, a town 40 kilometers (25 miles) west of London.

Lawyer Alexander Dobrovinsky told Russian state TV that his client - who had survived assassination attempts in the past - lately had been in "a horrible, terrible" emotional state. "All he had was debts," Dobrovinsky said. "He was practically destroyed. He was selling his paintings and other things." A mathematician-turned-Mercedes dealer, Berezovsky amassed his wealth during Russia's chaotic privatization of state assets in the early 1990s following the collapse of the Soviet Union. In return for backing former Russian President Boris Yeltsin, he gained political clout and opportunities to buy state assets at knockdown prices, making a fortune in oil and automobiles.

He also played a key role in brokering the rise of Yeltsin's successor, Vladimir Putin, in 2000. But Berezovsky later fell out of favor with Putin, and eventually sought political asylum in the U.K. in the early 2000s to evade fraud charges he contended were politically motivated. Berezovsky was one of several so-called Russian "oligarchs" to butt heads with Putin. After coming into power, the Russian president effectively made a pact: the oligarchs could keep their money if they didn't challenge him politically. Those who refused often found themselves in dire circumstances. Some were imprisoned - like the former Yukos Oil chief Mikhail Khodorkovsky - while others, like Berezovsky, fled Russia.

The assets of these pariah businessmen, meanwhile, were acquired by state corporations or cooperative tycoons, often at bargain prices. Over the years, Berezovsky accused Putin of leading Russia toward dictatorship and returning it to a Soviet-style system of state monopoly on the media. In the U.K., Berezovsky allied himself with an array of other Kremlin critics. Among them was ex-KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko, who fled Russia with Berezovsky's help after accusing officials there of plotting to assassinate political opponents. Litvinenko died on Nov. 26, 2006, after drinking tea laced with a lethal dose of the rare radioactive isotope polonium-210 in a London hotel. From his deathbed, Litvinenko accused the Kremlin of orchestrating his poisoning, and British police named former KGB agent Andrei Lugovoi as the prime suspect.


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Boris Berezovsky death: Chemical hazard police search house
23 March 2013 - A cordon remains in place around Boris Berezovsky's house
Police with expertise in environments contaminated with chemical, biological and nuclear material are searching the house of the late exiled Russian tycoon Boris Berezovsky. Mr Berezovsky, 67, was found dead on Saturday, and a Thames Valley police cordon remains in place as police investigate his unexplained death. The body remains at the Berkshire house while the search - described as a precaution - takes place, police said. They say local people are not at risk. The ambulance service was called to the Ascot house of Mr Berezovsky at 15:18 GMT on Saturday. His body was reportedly found in a bath.

Wanted man

A Thames Valley police update said: "Specially trained officers are currently at the scene, including CBRN [chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear] trained officers, who are conducting a number of searches as a precaution. "This is to enable officers to carry out an investigation into the man's death."

Supt Stuart Greenfield said: "We are aware the cordon is causing disruption to local residents and we apologise for any inconvenience, but it is important we take all necessary measures to ensure a full and thorough investigation can be carried out. "I would like to reassure residents that we are confident there is no risk to the wider community." He said the property was part of a large estate, so a number of roads were closed "and will remain so for the time being".

A former Kremlin power-broker whose fortunes declined under President Vladimir Putin, Mr Berezovsky emigrated to the UK in 2000. He was a wanted man in Russia, an opponent of Mr Putin, and had survived numerous assassination attempts, including a bomb that decapitated his chauffeur.

Court cases
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Wise ol' monkey
Feb 6, 2011
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Okolona, KY
Mebbe his bookie did him in?...
Berezovsky's billions: How the tycoon lost so much
Mar 25,`13 -- How do you burn through billions?
The unexplained death of Boris Berezovsky, whose body was found Saturday inside his upscale English home, has refocused attention on the fantastic wealth racked up by Russia's ruthless oligarchs - and their propensity for spending it. Berezovsky, 67, had once been considered Russia's richest man - but by this January, a British judge was wondering whether the tycoon would be able to pay his debts.

Police say Berezovsky's death is unexplained but that there was no evidence of anyone else being involved. His lawyer said the oligarch had been in "a horrible, terrible" emotional state. The tycoon had survived several assassination attempts, including a 1994 car bomb in Moscow, and there was speculation as to whether his death was natural, part of a conspiracy or a suicide. To understand how one man could lose so much money, it helps to see how he made it in the first place.


Berezovsky, a mathematician, made his fortune in the 1990s during the catastrophic privatization of the Soviet Union's state-run economy. That era was marked by hyperinflation, contract killings and rampant corruption. As Russia's GDP crumbled, oligarchs leveraged their ties to ruthless criminals and crooked officials to tear off huge chunks of the country's assets for themselves, draining resources and stripping factories to build fabulous fortunes.

Berezovsky - whose interests ran from automobiles to airplanes to aluminum - was one of this dark period's primary beneficiaries. He became a political operator in Russian President Boris Yeltsin's inner circle, trading on his connections to rack up assets estimated by Forbes to be worth roughly $3 billion in 1997. "No man profited more from Russia's slide into the abyss," author Paul Klebnikov wrote in a critical profile of Berezovsky titled "Godfather of the Kremlin."

Eventually, the abyss began threatening Berezovsky as well. The tycoon had been instrumental in orchestrating the accession of Yeltsin's successor, Vladimir Putin, but when the new leader and Berezovsky began to clash, his political cover disintegrated. Berezovsky then fled the country in 2000, eventually claiming political asylum in Britain.


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Post-mortem shows Russian tycoon died from hanging
March 25, 2013, A post-mortem examination found that self-exiled Russian tycoon Boris Berezovsky died by hanging, and there was nothing pointing to a violent struggle, British police said.
Thames Valley Police said Monday that further tests, including toxicology examinations, will be carried out. The force did not specify whether the 67-year-old businessman hanged himself, but they have said there was no evidence to suggest anyone else was involved in the death. Once one of Russia's richest men and a Kremlin powerbroker, Berezovsky fled to Britain in 2001 and claimed political asylum after a bitter falling out with Russian President Vladimir Putin. He became a vocal critic of the Kremlin. Berezovsky had survived several assassination attempts in Britain and Russia, including a car bomb in 1994 that killed his driver.

Berezovsky's body was found by an employee on the bathroom floor at his upscale England home on Saturday. The employee called an ambulance after he forced open the bathroom door, which was locked from the inside. Police said the employee was the only person in the house when Berezovsky's body was discovered. A forensic examination of Berezovsky's home will continue for several days, police said Monday. A mathematician-turned-Mercedes dealer, Berezovsky built up his wealth during Russia's chaotic privatization of state assets in the 1990s following the breakup of the Soviet Union. In return for backing Russian President Boris Yeltsin, he gained political clout and opportunities to buy state assets like oil and gas at knockdown prices.

Berezovsky helped build Putin's power base but fell out of favor when the new president moved to curb the ambitions of the oligarchs. The tycoon was charged in Russia with fraud and embezzlement. Berezovsky later associated himself with ex-KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko, another Kremlin critic. Litvinenko died after ingesting polonium in his tea at a London hotel in 2006. In recent years, Berezovsky's fortunes declined with numerous expensive court cases. Last year, Berezovsky lost a huge legal battle against former business partner and fellow Russian tycoon Roman Abramovich, which left him with legal bills of at least 35 million pounds ($53.3 million.)

Berezovsky had said that Abramovich, the billionaire owner of Chelsea Football Club, cheated him out of his stakes in the oil group Sibneft, arguing that he blackmailed him into selling the stakes vastly beneath their true worth after he fell out of Putin's favor. But a judge threw out the case in August, ruling that Berezovsky was a dishonest and unreliable witness, and rejected Berezovsky's claims that he was threatened by Putin and Alexander Voloshin, a Putin ally, to coerce him to sell his Sibneft stake. In 2010 Berezovsky also took a hit with his divorce from Galina Besharova, paying a settlement estimated to be as high as 100 million pounds.

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Platinum Member
Apr 23, 2017
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New Mexico
When people become traitors and defect to enemy countries, it is not unusual or immoral for them to be executed.

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