Russia sentenced the US to 16 years in the goon skin trial




A Russian court has sentenced former US marine Paul Whelan to 16 years in prison for his involvement in a case involving a Washington-linked prisoner of speculation.


Moscow City Court found Velen guilty of receiving classified information after standing on the dock with a sign reading "Shame Trial"! And US President Donald Trump has appealed for intervention.

He said the court process was "nothing less, no less than dirty, sensitive Russian politics."

The 50-year-old whale has been held in a Moscow prison since his arrest in December 2018, and his trial was held behind closed doors on charges of securing state secrets.

Throughout the trial, he maintained his innocence, claiming he was trapped, and comparing himself to the helpless comic character Mr. Bean.

"Russia thinks they caught James Bond on a mission, in fact, he kidnapped Mr. Bean while he was on vacation," he said.

When Whelen traveled to Moscow to attend a wedding, he took a USB drive from an acquaintance and thought it was holiday photos.

The prosecution sentenced the judge to an 18-year strict rule penalty in the colony, which carries a maximum sentence of less than 20 years.

'No proof'

US Ambassador to Moscow, John Sullivan, called the trial unfair and lacking transparency.

"I was disappointed in what I was hearing," he told reporters in court.

“(The whale) is sentenced to 16 years in prison with no evidence.

"I can't say I'm surprised. It's direction, in this case growing from scratch."

Prosecutors said last month that Velen was trying to obtain information that was a state secret and would jeopardize Russian security, Velen's lawyer Vladimir Jerebenkov told reporters.

The prosecutor claimed that Whelen had an official status in the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency - "at least one colonel" - the lawyer said.

The Whelan family predicted the verdict that the guilty verdict was a wrong decision.

Following Monday's sentencing, his brother David said in a statement that he would continue to fight for his family's release and criticized the court's politically motivated decision.

"We expect the court to show some independence, but in the end, Russian judges are political, legal, and corporations," he said.

Whelan was honestly released as a Marine before serving as Global Security Head at American Auto Parts Company.

There are indications that Whelen, who has British, Canadian, and Irish passports, can be brought back to the US in exchange for inmates.

Whelan's lawyer said Monday that Russian intelligence services are looking into the exchange of Russian intelligence services with two Russians detained in the United States, including pilot Constantin Yeroshenko, who is jailed on drug trafficking charges.

Brother David Whelan recently said the family hopes that a conviction will allow Russia and the United States to "immediately begin a debate over Paul's release."

Whelen complained that she was abused in prison and underwent an operation at a Moscow hospital last month, saying her family had undergone emergency hernia surgery.

While the US embassy has criticized the situation of Russian officials as "waiting for them to get medical access," the Russian Foreign Ministry has described the process as "simplistic".

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