Russia

Whelan’s lawyer called for an exchange of prisoners with Moscow

Russia: Moscow court rejects Whelan’s appeal, lawyer discusses prisoner swap

Former Marine accused of espionage is a citizen of four countries

A Russian lawyer for former US Marine Paul Whelan, who was arrested in Moscow on espionage charges, urged the United States and other countries to negotiate a prisoner swap with Russia so that his client could be released. Whelan holds US, UK, Irish and Canadian passports

Moscow insists that Whelan was caught red-handed, but he himself denies the charges and claims he was framed.

“Paul is a citizen of four countries.Whelan's lawyer called for an exchange of prisoners with Moscow None of them have yet asked to arrange for his exchange. Take the initiative, gentlemen! “- said the lawyer of Whelan Vladimir Zherebenkov.

According to Zherebenkov, last week he met with the ambassadors of four countries and outlined the possibility of exchanging Whelan, which can be done after the trial is over..

“Let’s see how they react,” he said..Whelan's lawyer called for an exchange of prisoners with Moscow – As you know, this case is politicized. Anything can happen “.

According to Zherebenkov, the trial in Whelan’s case has not yet begun, but the investigation is over and the defense is studying the case materials..

Earlier Tuesday, the Moscow City Court ruled that Whelan should remain in custody until December 29, rejecting his request for release pending trial..

Whelan himself was not allowed to be present at the meeting, in connection with which he did not have the opportunity to speak. The accused was shown in the courtroom via video link. He was holding a sheet of paper with text in his hands, but it was impossible to make out the words.

Earlier in court appearances, Whelan complained of ill-treatment in prison and claimed that his complaints were systematically ignored..

The spokeswoman for the court was unable to clarify why Whelan was not present at the hearing, since the details of his case are classified.

According to Zherebenkov, Whelan wanted to be present in court and feared that he would not be able to hear what was happening via video link due to an injury he received in Iraq..

Whelan was detained by FSB agents in a Moscow hotel on December 28 last year after a Russian friend handed him a flash drive.

According to the lawyer, Whelan believed that the carrier contains photographs from the vacation, but in fact, classified information was found there..

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