This businessman was playing a double game: supplier to NATO and agent for the Russian intelligence services at the same time.
Nikolaos “Nikos” Bogonikolos, a Greek national, was arrested in Paris on May 9 and imprisoned for intelligence with the enemy.
The information was released by the US Department of Justice on May 16. This operation, launched with the help of the French and Dutch authorities, involved several American organizations including the Department of Justice, the FBI office in Paris and the representative in France of American Customs, US Customs and Border Protection.
Bogonikolos (59), who heads the Aratos Group and is also a NATO supplier, is accused of having been in contact with the Russian intelligence services. He is accused of having provided them with sensitive information and dual technologies (civilian and military), as evidenced by the indictment .
It would also have supplied encrypted communication equipment and equipment for space transmissions, an area where one of its companies, Aratos Systems BV, was awarded in 2021 by NATO for its applications in the field of space.
His collaboration with the Russians dates back to 2017. In December, Bogonikolos traveled to Moscow where he was reportedly officially recruited. It would then have started supplying equipment and technology to two Russian companies, Serniya Engineering and Sertal LLC. These two Moscow companies are in fact controlled by the Russian intelligence directorate; they were placed on the list of Russian companies hit by US sanctions after February 24, 2022.
The Greek defendant is still in Paris waiting for the extradition procedure to be finalized.