The United States had allegedly extracted one of its highest-level moles in the Russian government in 2017 over fears he could be caught, CNN reported Monday, citing multiple Trump administration officials.
The alleged U.S. spy could be Oleg Smolenkov, an official with President Vladimir Putin’s administration, Kommersant reported Tuesday, citing anonymous social media channels and past media coverage.
Smolenkov had been a longtime trusted assistant of Yury Ushakov — a senior foreign policy aide to Putin — dating back to Ushakov's years as Russian ambassador to the U.S., Kommersant cited several unnamed sources as saying.
“This is serious,” one of the unnamed officials told Kommersant regarding the level of access he could have had to secret information.
The New York Times reported that the unnamed Russian spy had been recruited and cultivated “decades” ago.