A New Yorker long-suspected of being part of a spy ring that had been in contact with a former adviser of President Donald Trump has been shipped back to Moscow, reports The Hill.
According to a statement from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Evgeny Buryakov, 42, was dispatched to Moscow on Wednesday.
“Removing individuals like Mr. Buryakov represents ICE’s highest enforcement priority, which is protecting the national security of the United States,” said spokesperson Rebecca Adducci, before adding, “ICE will continue to move aggressively against those who engage in actions that could potentially compromise the security of our nation.”
Buryakov pleaded guilty in 2016 to conspiring to work as a Russian agent in the U.S., following a probe of a suspected spy ring involving Victor Podobnyy and Igor Sporyshev.
On Monday, a government report stated that Podobnyy had met with former Trump adviser Page back in 2013 at which time Page handed over documents as Podobnyy attempted to recruit him.
According to a transcript of Podobnyy speaking with government officials, he claimed, ““I think he [Page] is an idiot and forgot who I a He got hooked on Gazprom thinking that if they have a project, he could rise up. I also promised him a lot … this is intelligence method to cheat, how else to work with foreigners? You promise a favor for a favor. You get the documents from him and tell him to go f*ck himself.”
Buryakov’s deportation comes at a time when both congressional intelligence committees are investigating ties between Russian agents and President Donald Trump’s campaign aides — including Page.
According to interview with CNN, Page insisted he hid his Russian involvement from the Trump campaign.