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22 Jun, 2007 14:46

Moscow police official arrested for phone bugging

A senior police official has been arrested in Russia's capital on suspicion of illegal wiretapping. According to a Moscow police spokesman, another official is also being investigated in connection with the case.

Earlier there were reports in the Russian press, that the country's security service and Interior Ministry investigators had arrested a senior officer within Moscow's police force in connection with the bugging of the phones of businessmen and politicians on the orders of their rivals.

According to the Kommersant daily newspaper, the man worked for a secret police department responsible for wiretapping, covert video surveillance and other technical support operations.

Moscow police confirmed that several months ago they received information about the leak of phone conversation transcripts, after which a special investigative commission was established.

The Police Spokesman, Evgeny Gildeev, refused to give the name of the arrested man, and stressed that the guilt of the two suspects is yet to be proven.

“Two or three months ago the Moscow central office received information about the leak of the phone conversations outside the Directorate of Internal Affairs. So, the authorities made an order to the in-home security service of the personnel inspectorate to find out what was going on. They alerted the federal security service to the case and the in-home security service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia.  A thorough investigation has been carried out and the source found – a probable source. The chief of one of the departments was detained on suspicion of committing this crime. The information in some mass media about the involvement of some people from the Moscow criminal investigation department is being checked now,” he explained.