An award-winning beautician from Bulgaria is one of five people from the country accused of spying for Russia.
Vanya Gaberova, 29, is a British-based company director living in Acton.
She is an ‘eyelash extension specialist’ and an ‘accredited eyelash extension practitioner’ who has won many awards in the UK and Bulgaria, as well as in Russia.
Ms Gaberova is one of five Bulgarian nationals who will be charged with ‘conspiracy to collect information intended to be directly or indirectly useful to an enemy and for a purpose detrimental to the security and interests of the state between August 30, 2020 and February 8, 2023’.
Ms Gaberova, Orlin Roussev, 45, Bizer Dzhambazov, 41, Katrin Ivanova, 31, and Ivan Stoyanov, 31, will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on September 26. The Crown Prosecution Service said this on Thursday. It follows a metropolitan police research.
Vanya Gaberova, 29, is one of five Bulgarian nationals accused of conspiring to collect information that could be useful to an enemy
Social media profiles linked to Ms Gaberova describe her hobbies as ‘travelling, cooking, shopping, walking and reading’
Ms Gabervoa is the director of her own company, based in Acton, and is said to be talented in eyelash extensions
Ms Gaberova runs a company, VG PRETTY WOMAN LTD in Acton, and is said to have studied at the University of National and World Economy in Bulgaria
(L-R) Orlin Roussev, 45, Katrin Ivanova, 31, and Bizer Dzhambazov, 41, were previously charged on February 11, 2023
Her company is called VG PRETTY WOMAN LTD and she is said to have studied at the University of National and World Economy in Bulgaria.
Her social media profile links her to ‘travelling, cooking, shopping, walking and reading’.
Nick Price, head of the Crown Prosecution Service’s (CPS) Special Crimes and Counter Terrorism Branch, said: ‘The CPS has authorized a charge of conspiracy to commit espionage against three men and two women suspected of spying for Russia .’
Roussev, Dzhambazov and Ivanova were previously charged on February 11, 2023 with possession of false identity documents.
The five suspects are said to have worked in an operational spy cell of the Russian security services BBC reports. This would involve carrying out target monitoring.
The suspected spies are accused of participating in active operations in Britain and Europe and passing on the information collected to Russia.
The five Bulgarians were arrested in February under the UK’s Official Secrets Act after raids on properties in London and Great Yarmouth in Norfolk. MI5 is said to have passed the intelligence on to the Met Police.
Roussev, who has a history of doing business in Russia, is said to have run the operation from a boarding house in Norfolk, acting as an intermediary for those gathering intelligence.
Neighbors said police had set up a tent outside the three-star Haydee Hotel in Great Yarmouth when he was detained. Investigators are said to have found equipment in his room to produce false documents.
Last month it emerged that Roussev and Dzhambazov and Ivanova – believed to be a couple living at the same address – were charged with possessing 34 IDs, some of which were believed to be fake.
Agents have reportedly found fake passports and official identity documents for Britain, Bulgaria, France, Italy, Spain, Croatia, Slovenia, Greece and the Czech Republic.
Orlin Roussev lived in this apartment complex in the Norfolk seaside town of Great Yarmouth
Partying: Katrin Ivanova, right, is seen dancing at a Bulgarian restaurant in Palmers Green, north London
The trio were also accused of posing as journalists from US television companies after Scotland Yard found fake press passes and branded clothing from Discovery and National Geographic channels. The times reported.
They appeared at the Old Bailey in July to face these charges.
Roussev, Dzhambazov and Ivanova are believed to have lived in Britain for several years, working different jobs and living in different suburban houses.
The Bulgarians also had links to a flat in north-west London, a mile from the RAF Northolt military base, according to the sources. The Telegraph. The base is frequently used by ministers, foreign heads of state and members of the royal family.
Roussev moved to Britain in 2009 and worked in the financial services industry for three years, working in a technical job, the BBC reports.
According to social media profiles, Dzhambazov worked as a hospital driver, while Ivanova described herself as a laboratory assistant for a private healthcare company.
The pair also worked for election commissions in the capital that helped Bulgarians living abroad vote back in their home country.
Neighbors said they were popular figures locally as they had handed out cakes and pies to people living nearby.
Ivanova (circled) can be seen holding hands in a party circle at the Bulgarian restaurant in 2015
But eyebrows were raised when Dzhambazov installed a satellite dish on the side of his property, which appeared to be pointing in the wrong direction compared to all the other satellite dishes on the street.
He then tried to install an even larger antenna on the outside wall, until local residents complained that it would block the light from their home, the neighbors claimed.
Dzhambazov is also said to have told people in the area that he worked for Interpol.
A neighbour, James, told the Telegraph: ‘I remember they had their (satellite dish) pointed in a different direction to everyone else.
“At one point he had a friend in the neighborhood and they tried to hang a giant one on the wall. But it would have blocked the light in my flat and so we had words about it but it didn’t happen.
‘When he arrived, he mounted a camera on the wall of his flat so it looked out over the car park. It’s still there.’
After moving to Britain about a decade ago, they ran a community organization for Bulgarians, including teaching them the “culture and norms of British society.”
Britain has sharpened its focus on external security threats, passing a new national security law in July, which aims to deter espionage and foreign interference with updated instruments and criminal law provisions.
Bizer Dzhambazov (left) and Ivanova are suspected of collecting information for Russia
Dzhambazov and Ivanova headed a community organization that provided services to Bulgarians. The group was called Bulgarian Social Platform and it is believed that this is their office
Dzhambazov and Ivanova were also both registered at the same address in Harrow, north London
When the law was passed, the government labeled Russia “the most immediate threat” to its security.
Police have charged three Russians, who they say are GRU military intelligence officers, over the 2018 attempt to kill former double agent Sergei Skripal with the military-grade nerve agent Novichok. Two were indicted in 2018 and the third in 2021.
Last year, Britain’s domestic spy chief said more than 400 suspected Russian spies had been expelled from Europe.
Britain has been one of Ukraine’s biggest supporters since Russia’s invasion last year and has imposed a series of sanctions on Russian officials and oligarchs.
Roussev is from Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, Dzhambazov is from Harrow, North West London, Ivanova is from Harrow, North West London, Stoyanov is from Greenford, West London, and Gaberova is from Churchway, North West London.