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Russian Court Finds Ex-US Marine Paul Whelan Guilty Of Espionage, Sentences Him To 16 Years In Prison

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Russian Court Finds Ex-US Marine Paul Whelan Guilty Of Espionage, Sentences Him To 16 Years In Prison

Paul Whelan stands inside a defendants’ cage as he waits to hear his verdict in Moscow on June 15, 2020. © AFP / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEV

RT reports (source):

Eighteen months after he was arrested in a Moscow hotel room and accusing of spying, a Russian court has handed down a 16 year jail term to Paul Whelan, a national of four western countries: Canada, Ireland, the US and the UK.

The 50-year-old defendant described the trial, partly held behind closed doors, as a “sham” and protested his innocence throughout the process. After Monday morning’s verdict, he immediately stated that he intends to appeal. There have been suggestions that Whelan could be returned to the US in a prisoner swap.

His lawyer has named Viktor Bout and Konstantin Yaroshenko – two Russians jailed in the US – as potential candidates. Bout, who Russia considers a ‘political prisoner,’ is serving a 25-year term for arms dealing. Meanwhile, Yaroshenko was arrested in Liberia in 2010 in what the Russian Foreign Ministry described as a “kidnapping” and brought to the US. He had never set foot in the country before. Russian authorities have repeatedly complained about the harsh conditions and lack of medical care he has received in US prison.

In December 2018, former US marine Whelan was detained in the Russian capital’s five-star Metropol Hotel after he accepted a USB device from an undercover FSB officer. Prosecutors alleged the flash drive included information related to active-duty members of Russia’s secret service. Whelan’s defense said he was the victim of a sting.

His legal team insisted Whelan believed he was receiving a flash drive containing photos of a joint event he set up with a Russian man he believed to be a friend, rather than highly classified information.

Whelan has been a frequent visitor to Russia since the mid-2000s, and he reportedly appeared on the security service’s radar as a possible intelligence threat several years before his arrest.

From the start, his family has rubbished claims he’s involved in espionage, describing him as a travel enthusiast who visited Moscow for a wedding. Whelan maintained an account on Russian Facebook-clone VKontakte where in January 2019, according to ABC News, his 55 “friends” were almost exclusively young men, most of whom seemed to have some sort of connection to the armed forces posted on their page. Only three were women.

Following the illegal American and British-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, Whelan served in the US Marine Corps Reserve for five years, holding the rank of staff sergeant. In January 2008, he was court-martialled for “larceny” and later given a “bad conduct” discharge. Until 2016, he was senior manager of global security and operations at Kelly Services, an American office staffing company. Whelan has also worked as a police officer in the US. Born in Canada, he was living in Michigan before his arrest in Russia.

The US Ambassador to Moscow, John Sullivan, spoke outside the court building. “The United States demands that US citizen Paul Whelan be released immediately,” he said. “His conviction is a mockery of justice, the world is watching.”

Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov indicated on Monday that Moscow might be open to a prisoner swap deal. “We have repeatedly proposed options where it would be possible for those US citizens who are serving sentences in Russia to be exchanged for Russian citizens who are serving sentences on far-fetched and unlawful charges (in the US),” he told Ria Novosti. “I have no reason to speculate on what may happen next, these ideas have been offered to the Americans many times.”

Sullivan said that the US was not looking for an exchange, but rather “justice” for Whelan.

A notable feature of the saga has been restrained reporting from the US press, which typically would give a case of this nature massive coverage. For example, at lunchtime on Monday, the New York Times buried the story in its “other news” section under the neutral headline “Russian Court Sentences Paul Whelan, an American, to 16 Years on Spy Charges.” This has raised eyebrows in Moscow media circles.

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Tommy Jensen

If he did anything as a patriot to his country he did it for freedom.

Dick Von Dast'Ard

Which country is that?
Seems to be unsure what he is.

Tommy Jensen

If the info is correct, he certainly seems to be a very weird guy.

Jaime Galarza

But you still believe he was a patriot and he did it for freedom. The freedom the US exports at the point of a gun?

good american

He did it for ALL his countries.

Tommy Jensen

Britain.

Dick Von Dast'Ard

Certainly doesn’t sound very British to my ears.
Maybe he took a dump in a British loo once, but I’m simply guessing.

Tommy Jensen

If you have noticed all the media inclusive this one, you almost never hear anything about britain from the hot spots.
They are leading from behind, and in the back of all the other countries mentioned.

FlorianGeyer

Paul Whelan was a citizen of the world :)
The CIA offered him identies so that he could engage in ‘friendship with other nations.

Jaime Galarza

Which country was he serving? He had 4 passports. Probably he was a pragmatic man and used one or the other according to his convenience.

SnowCatzor

Rootless cosmopolitans like him have no loyalty to anyone but themselves. This is why dual citizenship should be banned.

Tommy Jensen

See above.

FlorianGeyer

And money ,Tommy. Never forget the payola :)

Tommy Jensen

:-D.

Lazy Gamer

What was the time stamp for the access dates of the files? This would prove whether he had actual knowledge. Words uttered are still not enough since they could be incredible or just hearsay. Sting operations in offered information are not as clear cut as drug stings as the latter are manifestly illegal and in corporeal form. I lean more on the theory of instigation. If it were me, I would have accepted the USB if the agent said it was the best porn videos. lol

chris chuba

Are you saying that if he read the files after receiving it that would imply guilt but not accessing files would keep it ambiguous. Interesting point.

Lazy Gamer

Even if the agent said that it was Putin’s stash, or the nuclear codes, there was no reason to believe him. For all we know, it could be a collection of the cutest puppy pics. He might be in possession of something but he is NOT knowingly in possession.

OTOH if the charge were spying or collecting information, there was no overt act on his part to collect, rather he only received something of which he has no knowledge. Again, the USB could turn blank or with innocent contents. so even if he received something, he did not know the contents thereof apart from the hearsay statement of the giver.

At the point where he accessed the files, NOW he has knowledge that this were state secrets. He could now be charged knowingly for possessing classified information or of spying/collecting military secrets. The situation would be different if he asked for it however. If the initiative were purely from the undercover agent, then I believe that is instigation.

cechas vodobenikov

another incompetent American spying for money—the only God Americans worship

RichardD
Ivan Freely

Shit, I wouldn’t mind having a free AR-15.

RichardD

No background check required. I wonder if the guy handing them out will get picked up outside of the zone? Or if they’ll go in there and get them.

“Transferring or Selling Firearms. Commonly referred to as the “gun show loophole,” in 2014, Washington became the first state to enact a law requiring background checks on private sales. The law requires private buyers and sellers to conduct a firearms transaction through a federally licensed firearm dealer (FFL). …

A sale or transfer of a firearm that in violation of this law is a gross misdemeanor upon the first offense.”

– TRANSFERRING OR SELLING FIREARMS –

https://www.washingtongunlaw.com/transferring-or-selling-firearms#:~:text=Transferring%20or%20Selling%20Firearms,licensed%20firearm%20dealer%20(FFL).

RichardD

Looks like if you’re guilty of sedition that the mayor, county prosecutor, state attorney general and governor are all ok with seditionists breaking any laws that they want.

But if you get attacked by rioters and shoot one of them in self defense you get charged with felony assault and the rioters don’t get charged with anything.

RichardD

This is the guy who talks with the mayor’s office every day. Did she give him the thumbs up to hand out rifles to rioters?

Ivan Freely

Yep. I agree there was some informal agreement even with the blessings of the ATF. Those rioters are likely on someone’s payroll so some vetting was done prior to giving them rifles.

RichardD

The guy handing them out has business relations with the city government for financing that he received before the whole CHAZ deal started.

Unless he can provide transfer paperwork that predates the video for the recipients. He’s in violation of state firearms laws.

“Raz the warlord, doesn’t only run guns, he owns guns. Raz owns a couple of handguns, which were somehow ‘restored’ through a special intervention after a conviction. …

Raz somehow received a grant for $82,000 from the city of Seattle to open his own studio in a building he purchased with another loan.

And Raz owns multiple luxury cars, including a Tesla, a BMW and a Jaguar XJ.

He also owns some prime real estate and rental properties.

He owns the RAZ fashion line, the Aurora Smoke Shop, a social club called “The Spot”, the Black Umbrella Corporation. All this came from funding in sweetheart deals.”

– The Mysterious Case of RAZ from CHAZ – BLM Warlord Owns Multiple Guns (including an Uzi), a Tesla, BMW and Jaguar XJ, Millions in Properties, and Is Supported by Dubai Government –

https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/06/exclusive-mysterious-case-raz-chaz-blm-warlord-owns-multiple-guns-including-uzi-tesla-bmw-jaguar-xj-millions-properties-supported-dubai-government/

RichardD

This is the mayor’s partner in sedition who is handing out guns to seditionists.comment image

Tommy Jensen

Free shipping. comment image

Tommy Jensen

As these riots are staged and paid for by Wall Street Corp, I would assume that this les affaire with pallets of bricks and guns is to provocate arms controle.

RichardD

There’s a difference between staged and exploited. The ones that I’ve witnessed were spontaneous. You can’t stage that many people in the streets. They come out on their own volition. Then there are organizers who try to steer them to their agenda. 50% unemployment and 24/7 media bullhorning of their provocations add fuel to the fire. And without the lockdown the demonstrations would have been far smaller and subsided sooner.

I’m not sure what the deal is with Raz Simone. But I agree that there’s something fishy going on. But when you have a police department and county prosecutor that lets him go around unarrested and unprosecuted when the evidence indicates that he’s breaking gun laws, and rioters attacking a gun owner go unprosecuted, and the gun owner shoots one of them that is attacking him in self defense. And the police arrest him and the prosecutor charges him with felony assault based on the premise that he provoked the shooting. Then that’s an indication that the authorities are more interested in gun control of people who legally own and use them. Then in catching criminals who victimise gun owners and violate gun laws.

RichardD

– Warlord “Raz from CHAZ” Caught on Video Handing Out AR15s to Random Young Activists –

https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/06/video-warlord-taz-chaz-caught-video-handing-ar15s-random-young-activists/

RichardD

comment image

– Antifa #CHAZ Thugs Attack, Choke and Sexually Assault Street Preacher in Seattle –

https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/06/antifa-chaz-thugs-attack-choke-sexually-assault-street-preacher-seattle-video/

RichardD

“Anti-police Black Lives Matter – Antifa protesters took over the plaza in front of the capitol building in Nashville, Tennessee on Sunday. The group proclaimed it an “autonomous zone” like the CHAZ compound in Seattle.”

– It’s Spreading: Antifa-Black Lives Matter Protesters Set Up Illegal Autonomous Zone on Plaza at Tennessee State Capitol –

https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/06/spreading-antifa-black-lives-matter-protesters-set-illegal-autonomous-zone-plaza-tennessee-state-capitol-video/

RichardD

“Armed militants guarding the “CHAZ,” [Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone] a six square block ‘police free’ zone in Seattle hijacked by BLM and Antifa terrorists, threatened an Uber driver who was simply waiting for a pickup outside of the autonomous zone.

This is what the far-left Seattle mayor calls a ‘summer of love with potlucks and drum circles.’

The Uber driver told two reporters how the armed guards at the “CHAZ” pulled out guns and threatened him while he was waiting for a pickup outside of the “autonomous zone.”

“They [CHAZ border guards] both pulled out guns and put them to my f*cking head,” the Uber driver said.”

– ‘They Pulled Out Guns and Put Them to My F*cking Head’ – CHAZ Militants Threaten Uber Driver Waiting For Pickup Outside Autonomous Zone –

Gary Sellars

What a despicable prick. I want to take that sign, roll it up tightly, and shove it down his fucking throat.

No human rights? Really???? If he is so concerned about HR maybe he should have spent his time more constructively and stayed in the US and campaigned against a criminally violent US police culture?

JIMI JAMES

Got caught,too bad it failed,best be a man and accept punishment like real men do,instead of squealing like pathedic little girly,just like that useless ambassador whom no respect for law of the lands,being the pathedic cia/assflogged that it truly is,I doubt the loser’s respected by cia!

Volker

The Rogue AmeriCunt Mafia/Terrorist State Deep-State + Regime whining about ‘foul play’ and stuff but he was caught [literally] red-handed. As a pure coincidence he has 4 passports US UK Canadian [Five-Eyes anyone?] and an Irish as well. If it qacks like a duck and walks like duck it’s more than ‘Highly Likely’ that’s a duck, in this case he’s with ‘Near Certainty’ a Spy and he got what he deserved, not like the AmeriCunts charge somebody w/o evidences on some fabricated politized phony BS charges like Butina ect.

RichardD

These are pictures of the protest camp tonight. All of the barricades are manned.comment imagecomment imagecomment image

RichardD

The sentry at the zone entrance that I came in at had a guitar hardcase slung across his back. I’m assuming that it contained an assault rifle. I wonder how many of the campers are armed?

<>

That’s how Russia works, they did the same with an Israeli citizen who did nothing but travel through Moscow’s airport and they cpatured her for political gains. In the end she was released, but Bibi has to give something back to Putin which was never published. Since then, many Israelis avoid traveling to Russia using connection flights, and many Russian citizens are refused enterance here.

cechas vodobenikov

more feminine lies by fake z—drug addled Israelis r detained in Russia, bringing your immoral rottenness to other nations—your whole economy relies on Russian Jews —more than 1.5 million…many of whom r returning to Russia, disgusted with your racism and stupidity

cechas vodobenikov

a stupid amerikan spy—apparently the israelis r more competent—the Israeli who leaked their nuclear program is apparently in an Israeli prison to this day

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