Lyalin, Oleg Adolphovich

   The defection of Lyalin in London in 1971 seriously compromised KGB covert operations in Europe. Lyalin, who had been tasked by Moscow to prepare sabotage operations in the United Kingdom to be activated in case of war, provided the British with detailed intelligence and military information about the Soviet Union. As a result of this information, the British government expelled 90 KGB and GRU officers and refused to allow another 15 on leave in the Soviet Union to return to Britain. He reportedly compromised agents throughout Western Europe. Lyalin’s information also compromised KGB plans for sabotage and terror in the West. Much of his information was declassified and published in the British press. Another result of his defection was the reorganization of the KGB’s components responsible for paramilitary operations: within the First Chief Directorate, the Eighth Department of Directorate S, which organized illegal work, was given additional responsibility for paramilitary activity.

Historical dictionary of Russian and Soviet Intelligence. . 2014.

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