Harvard revokes degree given to Russian spy

July 16, 2010

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BOSTON—Harvard University has revoked a degree in public administration it gave to a man who turned out to be a Russian spy living in Massachusetts under a stolen Canadian identity.

Andrey Bezrukov, who went by the name of Donald Heathfield while in the U.S., was one of 10 Russian agents arrested on June 27 and deported as part of a spy swap with Moscow.

Harvard spokesman Doug Gavel said Friday the John F. Kennedy School of Government stripped Bezrukov of the degree for violating its policy on misrepresentation in his application.

Gavel says the student handbook clearly states that "if the discovery occurs after a degree has been awarded, the degree will usually be rescinded."

The 49-year-old Bezrukov and 47-year-old Elena Vavilova, who went by the alias Tracey Foley, formerly lived in Cambridge with their two sons.

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