A general view shows the Palazzo Montecitorio, seat of the lower house of parliament, on Feb. 5, 2021 in Rome.
Photo by AFP
On the night of March 30, an Italian frigate commander, Walter Biot, was caught red-handed selling documents to Dimitry Ostrukhov, an employee at the Russian embassy in Rome. The documents, whose content has not been disclosed, are said to regard North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) telecommunications and logistics. They consist of 181 papers, of which 7 documents are “NATO Secret,” 57 are “NATO Confidential,” 9 are “riservatissimo” (Italian equivalent of “confidential” in the United States), and 65 are unclassified. Biot exfiltrated these materials from his office computer, photographing and storing them on an SD card provided to him by the Russians. Upon arrest, Biot was found with a suitcase containing 5,000 euros ($5,980), while the SD card was in Ostrukhov’s possession.