A Swedish politician has resigned after taking part in a St. Petersburg property deal linked to a Russian state official, Swedish news site The Local reported on Tuesday.
Yegor Putilov, secretary for the nationalist Swedish Democrats party, bought a house worth more than $700,000 from a Russian businessman in 2014. The businessman, who was in jail at the time of the transaction, is married to a senior figure in the Russian tax authority in St. Petersburg, the outlet reported.
Swedish Defense Minister Peter Hultqvist was one of several key figures who announced that Putilov could be a national security risk after the deal. Many were concerned that the Russian government could now have a “hold” over Putilov, who moved from Russia 10 years ago, The Local reported.
“Several people with a high level of competence have declared a potential security risk,” he told the Dagens Nyheter newspaper. “Therefore, I think that we should take the situation seriously.”
Putilov, who has already sold the property, said that he had been forced to resign due to a “unparalleled hate campaign” against him.
“Because of the hate campaign carried out by the media [due to this deal], I have become ill, and my private life has also been affected," he told Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet.