LONDON – British police have concluded that a former Russian spy was poisoned by a lethal dose of radioactive Polonium-210 added to his tea at a London hotel, according to news reports Friday.
Investigators have identified the teapot believed to have contained the radioactive tea, which eventually killed Alexander Litvinenko in November, Sky News said, citing unnamed Scotland Yard officials.
Police officials and a spokesman at the hotel declined to comment on the reports.
The reports also said police have identified another former Russian spy, Andrei Lugovoi, as a suspect in the murder. Sky News said British prosecutors believe they have enough evidence to charge him.
The reports cap a week of media speculation on the direction of the British investigation into the death. The Guardian newspaper also reported Friday that police were focussing on Lugovoi and preparing to submit evidence to prosecutors to decide whether to file charges against him, citing unnamed government officials.
Lugovoi, who has strenuously denied playing any role in the murder, was not immediately available for comment.
Of the 13 people who tested positive for contamination with Polonium-210 since Litvinenko was poisoned, eight worked at the hotel.
Two others who tested positive for the rare radioactive material also visited the hotel's bar, where Litvinenko drank tea with Lugovoi and other Russians on Nov. 1. Britain's health agency has identified the bar as the possible scene of the poisoning, and the area has remained off limits to the public since it was closed on Dec. 8.
Litvinenko, 43, died on Nov. 23.
The former agent fled to Britain after leaving Russia and was granted asylum. In exile, he became a vocal opponent of Russian President Vladimir Putin, accusing him in a deathbed statement of masterminding his death.
Russian officials have denied any involvement in his murder.