British Prosecutors to Receive Russian Spy Case British investigators say they are ready to hand prosecutors the information they've gathered about the death of former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko. Before his November death, he accused the Kremlin of plotting to kill him.

British Prosecutors to Receive Russian Spy Case

British Prosecutors to Receive Russian Spy Case

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British investigators say they are ready to hand prosecutors the information they've gathered about the death of former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko. Before his November death, he accused the Kremlin of plotting to kill him.

STEVE INSKEEP, Host:

But Rob, what have you learned?

ROB GIFFORD: That's right. They're playing their cards very close to their chest, Steve, and they're not saying anything at all. But we do know from sources here and in fact we've known all along that one man is really in the spotlight, and his name is Andrei Lugovoi. Very soon after the death of Alexander Litvinenko this name came up. He's a businessman in Moscow. He's also a former KGB spy. And what we're waiting to find out now is whether the file that the police have handed over yesterday to the Crown Prosecution Services, whether that contains his name and whether that Prosecution Services are actually going to charge him with the murder.

INSKEEP: And we're also wondering if this trail is going to lead back to the Russian government. Has that government been cooperating?

GIFFORD: Well, that's of course a very big issue as well. And so far they have not really been cooperating. I think British officials here feel very annoyed at the treatment they've been getting in Moscow. British investigators went to Moscow to speak to Mr. Lugovoi. They were only allowed to do so - in fact, it was Russian investigators who did the questioning. And the British investigators were allowed to be there but not to take a very major part in that investigation. So I'm not sure. Even if he is charged, the Prosecutor General's Office in Moscow says that Mr. Lugovoi will not be extradited to London. So I don't think anything beyond that, even higher up that people are suggesting that we might find out, I'm very doubtful that we will find that out.

INSKEEP: And I suppose, yeah, if you aren't extraditing the man, not only you're not able to try him, you're not able to question him; try to flip him, see who may have ordered him to do whatever he may have allegedly done.

GIFFORD: Exactly. And Mr. Lugovoi, he gave an interview yesterday actually in Moscow, where he denied involvement again and in fact said he was a victim himself of polonium poisoning.

INSKEEP: Was he?

GIFFORD: He'd - everywhere he went in Europe - he came to Britain just before the death of - just before Litvinenko was poisoned, and he left a trail of polonium everywhere he went. So certainly there are a lot of suspicions that he was contaminated. But many people feel that's because he was the guy who did it. We'll have to wait and find out.

INSKEEP: Rob, thanks very much.

GIFFORD: Thank you, Steve.

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