Russian spy officials have been accused of treason because they were cooperating with the CIA, according to a report.
The arrests of Sergei Mikhailov and his deputy Dmitry Dokuchaev, who worked for the KGB successor FSB’s Center for Information Security, were first reported by Russian media earlier this month.
Unidentified officials confirmed to Interfax, one of Russia’s major news agencies, on Tuesday that the two men were accused of working with the CIA.
It was not immediately clear what the exact alleged conduct was, though U.S. intelligence agencies have accused the FSB of hacking U.S. targets and Russia’s other agency, the GRU, of releasing information to help the election of President Trump.
A report from Novaya Gazeta said that Mikhailov is accused of passing on information regarding a breach of election systems in Arizona and Illinois last summer, which is not attributed in the U.S. intelligence hacking explainer released earlier this month.
He was taken out of an FSB meeting in December with a bag over his head and his not been heard from since, the independent newspaper reported.
Beyond Mikhailov and Dokuchaev, private cybersecurity expert Ruslan Stoyanov and one other person have reportedly been arrested, with Interfax saying that up to eight people were being spoken to as possible witnesses.
The Russian FSB’s headquarters on Lubyanka Square in Moscow.
A source told the agency that some of those people were involved in cyber attacks, and that others were not involved in the hacking but accused of working with foreign powers.
The arrests come amid a flurry of attention to the Russian security services, which beyond hacking were accused in a former British spy’s unsubstantiated dossier of holding “kompromat” on Trump.
A former FSB officer and close associate of Russian oil company head Igor Sechin, who was named in the documents, was found dead behind the wheel in late December
Police told Russian media that Oleg Erovinkin, 61, died of a heart attack.
Multiple reports have also cited possible connections between Mikhailov and hacking group Shaltai-Boltai (Humpty Dumpty), which has previously leaked information about Russian government figures and is believed to be linked to a faction of officials inside the government.