Russia: Moscow court upholds arrest for suspected US spy Whelan

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Moscow City Court on Tuesday upheld suspected US spy Paul Whelan’s detention until October 29.

Whelan himself called the case “an absurd provocation” and appealed for the US, Canadian, British and Irish authorities to intercede. The former US Marine Corps veteran holds citizenship from the four countries.

His lawyer Vladimir Zherebenkov stated that the court’s decision was “illegal, unreasonable and partly politically motivated,” adding that the defence team would appeal the decision.

Commenting on Whelan’s claims that he was framed by an acquaintance, Zherebenkov stated that “there were a lot of conversations from which you can edit any text. But we have not really studied the phonographic expertise, since we have not seen the appendix. We do not know how well this examination was carried out, what equipment was used, what methods.”

Whelan was detained in the Russian capital on December 28. If found guilty of espionage, he faces up to 20 years in prison.

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