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U.S. Jails Russian Banker For Conspiracy To Spy

Evgeny Buryakov is pictured in court in New York in January 2015.

A Russian banker has been sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison after pleading guilty to conspiracy charges in what U.S. prosecutors have described as a Cold War-style spy ring.

The defendant, 41-year-old Evgeny Buryakov, also received a $10,000 fine in the case on May 25.

Buryakov has asked to be deported after he is released from prison.

U.S. prosecutors say Buryakov worked undercover for Russia's SVR foreign intelligence agency for years while posing as an employee for the Russian bank Vnesheconombank in Manhattan and previously in South Africa.

Arrested in 2015, Buryakov pled guilty in March to one count of conspiring to act as an unregistered foreign agent while working on behalf of the Russian government.

A second, more substantive charge of actually acting as an unregistered foreign agent was dropped as part of a plea bargain with prosecutors.

Based on reporting by AFP and AP