Russian spy chief, oligarchs and Kremlin operatives accessed Hungarian cash-for-residency program

Hungary served as a key gateway to the European Union for a growing number of Russian spies, oligarchs and Kremlin political operatives, thanks to the sale of residency bonds between 2013 and 2017. A joint investigative report by the 444 news site, Direkt36 and Russia’s Novaya Gazeta, published in both Hungarian and English, shows that Russian citizens who should have raised national security concerns in Hungary were being granted full access to the EU by Hungarian authorities, in exchange for cash. This story first broke early this year and we covered it in HFP. Thanks to a follow-up report, we now have specific names of prominent and often questionable Russian nationals who bought their way into the EU, via Hungary.

Hungarians celebrate Vladimir Putin and Russian influence on the streets of Budapest. Photo: MTI.

Vladimir Blotskiy, a Member of the Duma

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