Court claims Bulgarian investigative journalist illegally crossed Russian border
A Moscow court on Friday ordered the arrest in absentia of Bulgarian investigative journalist Christo Grozev, whose reporting for the Bellingcat news outlet has angered Russia, RIA news agency said.
The court said Grozev had illegally crossed the Russian border. RIA cited a law enforcement source as saying that Grozev was accused of facilitating the escape of Roman Dobrokhotov, the editor of a Russian news outlet, who left Russia in 2021.
Friday's order was issued three weeks after the arrest of U.S. journalist Evan Gershkovich on charges of spying.
Grozev has probed the poisoning of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, the poisoning of former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and the downing of the MH17 passenger plane over eastern Ukraine. Russia denies responsibility for any of those attacks.
Ukraine war reporting
Grozev, lead Russia investigator for Bellingcat, has also reported on the Russian war against Ukraine.
Dobrokhotov works for The Insider, which has cooperated with Bellingcat on Russian projects.
After the court order, Grozev tweeted: "As Dobrokhotov said, 'Why don't they just poison us in absentia and just get it over with.'"
Grozev keeps his whereabouts hidden for security reasons. In December 2022, Russia's interior ministry put him on a wanted list, prompting a protest from Bulgaria.
Separately, Interfax said the Russian justice ministry had on Friday added Grozev to its list of foreign agents, accusing him of distributing "unreliable information about the decisions made by public authorities."
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