4. GEORGI MARKOV
Although he initially worked as a writer, Georgi Markov became a prominent critic of Bulgaria after defecting from the communist nation to the United Kingdom. After being marked as an enemy of the state for the work he was carrying out in London, Bulgarian secret police formed a plan to kill the dissident before he could cause more damage.
Enlisting the help of the KGB, the police agents were able to devise a device that could be used to poison Markov. While making his way to work in 1978, he was struck in the leg with an umbrella, causing a slight stinging sensation. He thought little of it until he found that the pain hadn’t gone away by the time he arrived at the BBC office where he worked. After later falling ill from a fever and passing away just days later, it was discovered the umbrella had inserted a tiny ricin-filled pellet into his leg.