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Following anonymous allegations of pedophilia, police search the home of the chemist who says he helped develop ‘Novichok’

Vladimir Uglev, one of the chemists who says he helped develop the Soviet nerve agent “Novichok,” told the BBC’s Russian-language service that police in Anapa searched his home this week, after unknown persons started posting leaflets on his car and outside his home and office accusing him of pedophilia.

The leaflets show Uglev’s photograph, full name, address, and date of birth, alleging that he uses candy to befriend children near schools and then solicits nude photos over Vkontakte. Uglev says three officers searched his laptop and tablet for evidence of child pornography, and also photographed his home. On February 15, he was fingerprinted and questioned at the local police station.

Uglev is one of three Russian scientists to confirm the existence of a top secret Soviet chemical weapons program following last year’s “Novichok” attack in Salisbury, England. In March 2018, Uglev told The Bell that he worked at the state chemical research institute “GosNIIOKhT” on a weapon meant to be the USSR’s response to VX. Uglev also told The Guardian that a Novichok nerve agent was used in a double homicide in 1995. In April 2018, Uglev was hit by a car and seriously injured, though he told reporters that the incident was just an accident.