A man who identified himself as José Assis Giammaria from Brazil, and secured a guest researcher post at Norway’s Arctic University in Tromsø, has now finally admitted he’s really Mikhail Valerijevitsj Mikusjin from Russia. He still refuses to answer questions from Norway’s police intelligence agency PST.
Mikusjin, believed to be tied to Russia’s own intelligence agency GRU, was arrested by PST in October of last year and charged with espionage. He faces up to 10 years in prison.
Newspaper VG reported this week that Mikusjin has been made aware of PST’s findings as the intelligence agency continues to investigate his past. Developments in the case prompted Mikusjin to decide, according to his defense attorny, that he might as well confirm his real identity. He still hasn’t submitted to a formal hearing with police, however.
PST believes he has received assistance from Russia’s embassy in Oslo, a claim the embassy reportedly has rejected. PST maintains that Miskusjin is “a well-trained” spy who graduated from GRU’s academy in 2006. He also lived and worked in Canada under his assumed identity as Brazilian Giammaria before coming to Norway.