Exclusive: Nikolai Glushkov spoke of collapse in Bristol hotel after meeting two Russians
Detectives investigating the murder of a Russian exile in London believe he was previously the target of a poisoning endeavor carried out by two mysterious humen from Moscow who visited him in a Bristol hotel room, the Guardian has learned.
Glushkov is now thought to have survived a previous attempt to kill him by poisoning in 2013, the Guardian can disclose. Detectives are reinvestigating the incident as part of their investigation into Glushkov's murder, which took place a week after the novichok poisoning in Salisbury of Sergei and Yulia Skripal.
The revelation has emerged in the week that Scotland Yard named two Russian suspects in the Skripal attack as Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov. The names are believed to be fake. Theresa May told MPs this week that both were career officers working for Russia's GRU military intelligence agency.
May's claim that the operation to kill the Skripals was sanctioned” at a senior level” by the Russian state has inspired furious refusals by Moscow. The Kremlin says it assures no reason to pursue Petrov and Boshirov, who presented genuine Russian passports when they flew on 2 March from Moscow to Gatwick airport.
In contrast to the Skripal investigation, which successfully tracked the two Russians on CCTV, detectives working on the Glushkov investigation have struggled to find leadings and are yet to identify any compellingsuspects, it is understood.
Scotland Yard's counter-terrorism command has released CCTV footage of a black van spotted around the time of Glushkov's murder on 11 March. Officers are working on the hypothesi that Glushkov may, like the Skripals, have been a victim of a professional assassin or assassins sent by Russia's spy agencies.
As part of their inquiries police are re-examining a suspected endeavor on Glushkov's life in early November 2013, six months after Glushkov publicly accused the Kremlin of murdering Berezovsky. Berezovsky had been found dead at his ex-wife's house near Ascot.
Glushkov told friends he first gratified the two Russians at Schiphol airport in the Netherlands. He was apprehensive about the encounter and picked the venue because of its CCTV coverage. He subsequently came across them again during a journey to Bristol, when he was staying at the Grand Hotel in Broad Street .
Read more: www.theguardian.com