"Citizen of Ukraine Valery Voitenko, 54 years old", who had been detained by the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine at the beginning of June, turned out to be a Colonel of the Russian Federation Valery Gratov. Russian special services planned to make him a Deputy Minister of State Security of unrecognized Transnistria, press-Secretary of State Border Guard Service Oleg Slobodyan reported on Facebook.
When this man was crossing the border, the operatives got suspicions about him and he was detained. Photos with the militants "Motorola", "Givi" and with the leader of the militants, Aleksander Zakharchenko were found in his smartphone.
A sheet of paper with identification data and telephone numbers of the first persons of the self-proclaimed Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic and people from Russian Federation, the "Red Star" Order, a smartphone, flash media were found and seized from a secret pocket in his jacket when border guarders were inspecting belongings of the detained. Later the State Border Guard of Ukraine identified the detainee, who turned out to be a career Russian military, Colonel Gratov.
According to the military journalist Andrei Tsaplienko, the detained Colonel of the Russian Federation was a former head of the personal guard of the President of the unrecognized Transnistria Igor Smirnov, acting instructor of Donbas militants and a close friend of “Givi” and “Motorola”. According to him, Gratov has been in Donbas since 2014, officially heading “the Union of the Donbas Paratroopers”.
"Valery A. Gratov has been in the area of military operations in the “Luhansk People's Republic” and “Donetsk People's Republic” since August 29, 2014, to date. In particular, he was recognized for the combat missions ... He took part in hostilities in: Luhansk, Alchevsk, Gorlivka, Makiivka, Donetsk, Snizhne, Ilovaisk, Yenakiivo, Vuhlehirsk, Debaltseve", Tsaplienko quoted the letter from the commander of one of the illegal armed formations to the State Duma of the Russian Federation.
The border guards handed over the detainee to the officers of the Security Service of Ukraine.