Murders committed in cold blood, shootings in broad daylight, sleeper agents spying on our affairs on our own soil. The Russians aren’t so much coming as here already – taking advantage of cold diplomacy to carry out revenge attacks on British streets and use the United Kingdom as a base to snoop on the West.
The escalation of violence and recent efforts to deport suspected spies have prompted questions about how exactly Britain is responding to the increase in Russian activity on these shores.
Ross Slater has an idea.
Slater is an ex-Paratrooper and ex-cop who, after leaving the force, started work as a private security consultant. In 2005 he began working as a security advisor to a wealthy American client – an attorney friend of Bill Clinton – based in Russia and stumbled upon an attempt by former FSB agents to trace dissidents based in the UK. At this point Slater was already known to the UK authorities. While acting as a consultant for Greenpeace, he successfully tipped off the police to a number of high profile stunts. So, when his US client’s interpreter revealed Russian secret service links, he felt duty bound to pass on his concerns.
At first his suspicions were duly noted but when, months later, Alexander Litvinenko was poisoned in London, the interest from the authorities in Russian activities heightened dramatically. So began a four-year investigation that saw him:
- Report to both MI5 and MI6 on the information he uncovered
- Successfully enable British-based spies to infiltrate their Russian counterparts
- Interrogated about his military background by FSB agents in Moscow
- Offered a bribe to disclose military secrets to Russian agents
- Protect Chelsea Clinton from a possible kidnap risk
- Help transfer a warhead being deployed in Afghanistan against British troops into UK intelligence hands.
Slater’s story is a compelling account of what happens when an ordinary bloke finds himself in the middle of a bizarre intelligence operation. For an ex-soldier and ex-cop, exposure to the workings of our intelligence service was the stuff of dreams. Yet, the closer he worked with our secret agents, the more he discovered that modern day espionage is far removed from the glamour of James Bond or even the shady efficiency of ‘the Circus’ in John Le Carré novels.
At times he had to collate information on his target – the enigmatic interpreter – while juggling the chaotic life of his client’s former high-class hooker girlfriend. And, even when he thought he was out of the game, a chance discovery of an arms trade gave him a further chance to assist his country.
Spy Games reveals no state secrets, but in this fast-paced, often amusing account of one man’s role in international intelligence gathering, Ross Slater shows that, while the Cold War might be over, a new game of espionage exists between Russia and Britain in the 21st Century. In addition, he gives a unique insight into how the two nations operate in secret against each other.
Packed with fascinating anecdotes and tradecraft, it is a startling first-hand account of what it is like to be a spy in the modern world.
Douglas Wight is the author or ghostwriter of fifteen non-fiction books, most recently Son of Escobar (Ad Lib, 2020) an Amazon number 1 bestseller, The Bad Room (Harper Element, 2020), Into the Bear Pit (Arena Sport, 2020) and Against My Will (Harper Element, 2020).
His previous books include The Laundry Man (Penguin, 2012), the memoir of Ken Rijock, a Miami-based money launderer for Colombian drug smugglers; the autobiography of Olympic gold medal winning hockey player Sam Quek (White Owl, 2018), which was long-listed for the Telegraph Sports Autobiography of the Year 2019; Unforgivable (...
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Ross Slater is a former lance corporal in the Parachute Regiment who served six years duty from 1974 to 1980, including a perilous tour of duty in Northern Ireland. Lucky to survive the IRA’s first remote-controlled car bomb blast, he eventually left the army to become a cop with Thames Valley Police.Seeking more adventure he landed a role as a security consultant to the Sultan of Brunei before striking out on his own as an independent investigator. Among his roles was as an undercover detective working at a food wholesalers reporting to the Regional Crime Squad.Slater then re-joined ...
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