While working at the KGB, Makarov furnished Britain's M.I.6 with information about the Soviet secret services' interception of coded messages transmitted between NATO embassies in Moscow and their counterparts in the West. In 1987, he was arrested in the Soviet Union and sentenced to ten years in prison, but pardoned five years later.
Makarov then lodged a political asylum request with the British Embassy. MI6 officers brought the former spy to the United Kingdom and asked counterparts at MI5 to take care of him there, the newspaper reports.
According to the man, British authorities promised to provide him with decent living conditions and new identification papers for personal security, but have failed to deliver on their promises. A subject of the British monarchy, he now lives off modest welfare benefits in a tiny house on the outskirts of Newscastle-upon-Tyne, in northern England. "I risked my life to communicate vitally important information to them, and may well have got killed by KGB men for my activity," the newspaper quotes him as saying.
Sunday Times correspondents have learned that in order to stop the former spy from publicly making accusations against British secret services, a one-off compensation of 65,000 pounds will be paid to him and all his litigation expenses will be reimbursed. The UK Treasury's Oliver Sanders has signed the deal on behalf of MI5.
Yet, Makarov remains unsatisfied. The compensation amount is too small for his efforts, he argues, turning for corroboration to historian Christopher Andrew, who has placed the Russian agent in the same rank as such renowned fellow spies as Oleg Gordiyevsky and Vasily Mitrokhin, The Sunday Times reports.