AfD worker tied to Russian FSB accused of disrupting German aid to Ukraine
Sergiyenko reportedly broached with his Russian contact the prospects of stopping or lagging weapon shipments to Ukraine and purportedly asked for more than 25,000 euros per month "for covering legal and representational costs" alongside "other AfD parliamentarians". These talks reportedly took place in the spring of 2023.
The scheme was said to include crafting a lawsuit to be lodged by AfD with the Federal Constitutional Court in July 2023 about the shipment of German tanks to Ukraine. By August 2023, "Der Spiegel" stated that Sergiyenko had tried to provoke a delivery setback spanning several months.
European intelligence services posit that Sergiyenko's "Russian contact" is FSB Colonel Ilya Vechtomov.
Sergiyenko Rebuts Allegations
Approached for a reaction by "Spiegel," Sergiyenko emphatically denied the claims. - "The assertions of me being an agent of Moscow's influence are baseless and utterly out of touch with reality. The alleged links to Russia are imaginary, and Ilya Vechtomov is a stranger to me as far as being the purported contact person is concerned - he claimed.
In media reports, it's observed that Vechtomov, listed in Sergiyenko's phone as "Aleksey," operates within an FSB department devoted to conducting international intelligence operations, those linked to Ukraine included.
"Der Spiegel" noted that Sergiyenko has been a person of interest to German agencies for some time and that the Berlin authorities are attempting to revoke the German citizenship he was granted in 2022. During his naturalization process, Sergiyenko presented only his Ukrainian passport, despite reportedly receiving a Russian passport that year as well.
Who is the Employer of Sergiyenko?
Eugen Schmidt, who is Sergiyenko's employer, has served as a member of the Bundestag since 2021. As found by "Tagesschau," Schmidt was noted criticizing Germany in the Russian state media, asserting that "there is no democracy in Germany and dissenting thoughts could lead to physical attacks," and that "proceedings in German courts are neither fair nor lawful."
Born in Kazakhstan, Schmidt figures among the members of the Bundestag's foreign affairs commission and is the representative for Russian-German affairs within the AfD parliamentary group.