Bertil Stroberg | Cold War spy, 79

Posted: April 05, 2012

Bertil Stroberg, 79, a former Swedish air force officer who was convicted of spying for Poland during the Cold War but always maintained his innocence, died in Stockholm on March 25 following a yearlong battle with cancer.

Stroberg was sentenced to six years in prison for spying in 1983, but released on parole after serving three years.

The key evidence in his case was a letter the prosecution said he had written to the Polish Embassy offering to sell military secrets. Handwriting experts failed to link the letter to Stroberg.

The letter was signed Sven Roland Larsson and asked that money be sent in that name to the Central Post Office. Stroberg was arrested in 1983 when he went to the post office to collect Larsson's mail.

The court rejected the officer's claim that he was the unwitting victim of a conspiracy and that he had picked up the letter as a favor for an acquaintance.

After a 2009 documentary presented new information about the case, Stroberg requested a retrial, but Sweden's Supreme Court dismissed the request in October 2011. - AP

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