(UnitedVoice.com) – On Monday, June 15, a Russian court convicted a former US Marine for espionage and sentenced him to 16 years in prison. Paul Whelan was in Russia for a wedding in December 2018 and was convicted of having a computer flash drive with Russian classified documents on it.
Whelan says it was a setup. He told Russian investigators that a Russian acquaintance gave it to him. Whelan said he thought the flash drive had holiday pictures on it.
Outraged by the decision today to convict Paul Whelan on the basis of a secret trial, with secret evidence, and without appropriate allowances for defense witnesses. Paul’s treatment by Russian authorities continues to be appalling, and we demand his immediate release.
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) June 15, 2020
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the United States was “outraged,” and the trial was illegitimate. He demanded Whelan’s immediate release.
In a statement on Monday morning, Pompeo said that international law requires a fair trial per their international human rights obligations.
Whelan, and his family, also asked Canada, Ireland, and the United Kingdom to help as well. He is a dual citizen of those countries, as well as the United States.
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