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Russian man arrested in Norway for drone footage; espionage suspected

Norwegian authorities have detained a Russin tourist for possession of illegal drone footage. A 50-year-old Russian who was planning to leave Norway had encoded a number of movie clips.

A Norwegian court has decided on arresting the man holding two Russian and one Israeli passport.

“We need time to decode and analyse the vast material filmed by the man. It’s over 4,000 GB on various storage mediums. We have seen Norwegian nature and private properties,” the main investigator Anja Indbjor said.

According to the Norwegian authorities, the detained man had been travelling across the country since August. He was detained in the north at the Norwegian-Russian border crossing Storskog for “breaking the sanctions, which ban Russian citizens to fly drones over the Norwegian territory.”

The country’s special services are at the ready to take over the investigation if it happens to involve espionage.

“The man explained that he was filming for his own, personal purposes. He claims to have Russian and Israeli citizenships and considers having two Russian passports as normal,” Indbjor said.

Norwegian authorities have recently increased their security alert level after there were reports of unidentified drones flying over oil and gas fields. Additional navy patrols were also ordered in the Norwegian Sea and the Northern Sea after the damage done to the Nord Stream pipelines.

Meanwhile, Russia has moved nuclear bombers to the Olenya airbase near Finland and Norway’s borders as tensions rise over the possible use of nukes. The number of strategic bombers has gradually increased from zero on August 12, to four supersonic Tu-160s on August 21, and now is at 11.

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