Alexander Litvinenko publicly accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of being a pedophile just four months before he was poisoned in 2006, an inquiry into the ex-KGB spy’s death has found.
When the future Russian president was a student, he was filmed abusing children in an apartment where another top politician had a threesome with prostitutes, Litvinenko claimed in an article on the Chechenpress website in July 2006, four months before he was murdered, The Daily Mail reported.
Litvinenko made the accusation after the president was pictured a month earlier kissing the stomach of a 5-year-old boy during a walkabout in a public square near the Kremlin.
“Nobody can understand why the Russian president did such a strange thing as kissing the stomach of an unfamiliar small boy,” Litvinenko wrote in the article.
The inquiry report, which included the article as evidence, described how Litvinenko claimed Mr. Putin was a “pedophile” and that the FSB — the KGB’s successor agency — possessed videos of him “making sex with some underage boys,” which Mr. Putin allegedly had destroyed.
The allegations were revealed in a comprehensive 329-page report prepared by retired High Court Judge Sir Robert Owen and released Thursday.
“It hardly needs saying that the allegations made by Mr. Litvinenko against President Putin in this article were of the most serious nature. Could they have had any connection with his death?” Mr. Owen wrote, The Independent reported.
“There was undoubtedly a personal dimension to the antagonism between Mr. Litvinenko on the one hand and President Putin on the other,” he added.
The judge’s report concluded that Andrei Lugovoi and Dmitri Kovtun poisoned the 43-year-old with radioactive polonium 210 at a Mayfair hotel in 2006.
“Taking full account of all the evidence and analysis available to me, I find that the FSB operation to kill Mr. Litvinenko was probably approved by [the spy agency’s then-head, Nikolai] Patrushev and also by President Putin,” the report said.
The Russian Foreign Ministry on Thursday dismissed the report as “politically motivated.”
“We need time to study in detail the contents of this document, and then give a detailed assessment,” a spokesperson said, The Independent reported.
“We would like to note that Russia’s position on this issue remains unchanged and is well known. … There was no reason to expect the final report of a politically engaged and highly opaque process to be objective and impartial.”