Moscow Court Upholds Arrest of Accused Spy

(Photo credit: Lubov Tandit via

(Photo credit: Lubov Tandit via

A court in Moscow today upheld the arrest of a 62-year-old Norwegian man who Russian officials allege was caught red-handed accepting "secret documents" about the Russian navy, according to reports.

Frode Berg, a retired former Norwegian border official, was detained in December in what was reportedly a Russian counter-intelligence operation. A Reuters report at the time said Berg's family believed his arrest was a misunderstanding and expected it to be cleared up within days. That didn't happen.

Berg's attorneys appealed his arrest, but today a Moscow city court upheld it in a closed-door hearing, Russia's TASS service reported.

In an interview with TASS late last week, an attorney for Berg said that investigators suspect he worked for Norway's intelligence service but not for the CIA, as had been speculated in some local media reports. Novikov said that Berg was unaware that anything he was doing could constitute espionage. He has pleaded not guilty.

The Russian citizen with whom Berg is alleged to have worked is accused of high treason, TASS said.

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