A former Russian spy was critically ill after exposure to an “unknown substance,” British media reported in a case that immediately drew parallels to the poisoning of former Russian agent Alexander Litvinenko.
National and local authorities said only that a man and a woman were found unconscious Sunday afternoon on a bench in a shopping mall in Salisbury, about 90 miles (145 kilometers) west of London.
British media identified him as Sergei Skripal, 66, who was convicted in Russia on charges of spying for Britain and sentenced in 2006 to 13 years in prison. Skripal was freed in 2010 as part of a U.S.-Russian spy swap.
….A British judge wrote in a 2016 report that Litvinenko’s death was an assassination carried out by Russia’s security services — with the likely approval of President Vladimir Putin.