April 10, 2024 2 min read


Wirecard Former Exec Marsalek Allegedly Served as Russian Spy in Europe

British intelligence agency data claims that the person gained access to sensitive data and smuggled a decryption machine called SINA into Moscow

Wirecard, a popular payments company that helped facilitate online gambling transactions and was even close to buying Deutsche Bank, was tangled in an unprecedented scandal dating back to a few years ago. Investigations against the company uncovered some $2 billion missing, which ultimately led to its downfall and subsequent fraud investigations of senior-level employees and its entire operations.

Jan Marsalek, the former COO of Wirecard and current fugitive, is among a list of people suspected to be involved in a massive espionage plot. The 44-year-old has been on the run for the last few years, and he is currently facing allegations of espionage, assassinations, break-ins, conspiracy and other operations conducted on behalf of the government of Russia.

Warrant for the Arrest of Alleged Co-conspirator Issued

Allegations against Marsalek claim that he was involved in a massive network across Europe where he co-conspired and helped conduct different operations. Outside Europe, it is also believed that he operated in Africa as well. To circumvent European security agencies, Marsalek allegedly collaborated with a number of individuals.

As announced by media outlets, Wirecard is suspected of providing funding on behalf of Russia for such operations across Europe and in other parts of the globe. The alleged Russian spy collaborated with Egisto Ott, an intelligence official from Austria, who is suspected of taking the role of a double agent.

A recent warrant for the arrest of Ott, seen by Der Standard, an Austrian newspaper, detailed a number of allegations, based on information provided by the British intelligence agency, MI5. In light of the warrant for the arrest, Ott was recently detained. He has denied any wrongdoing.

However, Marsalek remains at large, and he is currently among some of the most wanted men across Europe. In 2020, amid the downfall of Wirecard, he announced plans to travel to the Philippines on a company financial matter. This trip was likely a decoy as it is believed that Marsalek made his way to Belarus.

After that, he allegedly returned to Moscow, Russia, while smuggling stolen sensitive data. According to Ott’s arrest report, he allegedly gave Marsalek sensitive data collected from mobile phones belonging to three interior ministry officials in Austria.

Moreover, Ott allegedly helped the Russian spy gain access to high-tech equipment called SINA. This device, resembling a computer, helps decrypt classified information. Once Marsalek got a hold of the device, he allegedly took it back to Moscow.


Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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