FSB in habit of intentionally spreading stories of confessions

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The talk of lawyer to Estonian security police officer Eston Kohver jailed in Russia for a month is the usual FSB talk in such spy cases, said Russian scientist Igor Sutyagin with background of 11 prison years by will of FSB. 

In his interview to Postimees last week, Mr Kohver’s Russian-state-hired lawyer Yevgeni Aksyonov said the less public noise politicians and officials make as related to the case, the better for Mr Kohver. Silence in the matter is the best way to achieve Mr Kohver’s swap against someone in Estonia, hinted Mr Aksyonov.

According to Mr Sutyagin, FSB loves the public quiet in its criminal cases, this being their standard practice. «An investigator will be pressuring the accused, assuring him his case is very special which, however, requires silence – no need to make noise, and then things can be agreed,» said Mr Sutyagin, released from Russian jail four years ago and actively following FSB activities since then.  

Such FSM «massage», according to Mr Sutyagin often accompanied by an FSB collaborator as cell-mate and a constant state of stress, will often result in the accused consenting to cooperate with investigators.  

However, as pointed out by Mr Sutyagin, FSB standard tactics also include spreading rumours of their victim having agreed to cooperate, and of a sincere confession.

Even in Estonia, several newspapers have already referred to the need to be braced for a soon sincere confession by Mr Kohver possibility of Mr Kohver – true, always tagged with the clause he’d be doing that because FSB pressure.

«I suppose Mr Kohver should be quite well able to imagine the consequences of signing a document granting the Russian side the legal option of substantiating their lie of him being apprehended on Russian territory,» said Mr Sutyagin.

According to Mr Sutyagin, FSB is highly interested in a «sincere confession» by Mr Kohver to set it as counterweight to the joint border violation observation act signed on September 5th by Estonian and Russian deputy border representatives. In said act, Russian Border Guard Podpolkovnik Mr Zujev and Major Mr Teterin signed to confirm the fact there had been a border violation from Russian into Estonia and back to Russia, during which an Estonian citizen went missing.

«For FSB, this document is a serious slip and they need something as counterweight to it, like «confession» by Mr Kohver,» reasoned Mr Sutyagin.

Mr Sutyagin underlined that should Mr Kohver indeed come out with a confession, the Russian side would acquire a very strong propaganda trump card, as well as substantially undercutting options to defend him.

Asked if an early release from Russian jail would serve as motivation for confession, Mr Sutyagin answered by a proverb he says is common knowledge among inmates in Russia: «Sincere confession shortens preliminary investigation, yet prolongs the punishment.»

Arrested in 1999 but only convicted in 2004 by jury to 15 years in prison for leaking war secrets to USA, Igor Sutyagin used to work at Russian Academy of Sciences US and Canada topics institute, involved in nuclear issues. Having denied treason, Mr Sutyagin was released thanks to US special forces in summer of 2010 apprehending a group of Russian foreign intelligence agents (the best known being Anna Chapman) who were swapped for four Russians jailed for espionage – including Mr Sutyagin. Currently, Mr Sutyagin (49) lives and works in London.