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Russian court orders former US marine Paul Whelan over 16 years into prison for espionage

A Russian court sentenced Paul Whelan, an British and American citizen to 16 years in prison for espionage, the US ambassador said beyond a Moscow courthouse.

Whelan, a former US marine, has been detained in a Russian resort on December 28. Whelan said he was put up when he had been given a flash drive with categorized data on it, the AP reports.

US Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan called the verdict a”mockery of justice” saying that the embassy” hadn’t seen signs” in the situation.

Sullivan stated the US administration was worried about the situation at the greatest levels.

Members of the family have decried the absence of proof and the unfair trial in the instance. Whelan faced up to 20 years in prison for its spying charges.

The US embassy in Moscow said Russian prosecutors directed a secret and secret trial.

No. Proof created? No. The entire world is seeing,” the embassy tweeted, quoting Ambassador Sullivan before the trial.

Whelan recently obtained operation while in prison but the US said Russian police waited till it had been necessary for him to have the operation.

How will this situation reflect on Russia’s legal system?

A hasty decision adheres”into our hopes of the Russian legal system, which is to say, its absolute demonstrable lack of autonomy from the government’s executive branch,” Dr. Sergey Radchenko, a Cold War historian and director of research at Cardiff University’s School of Law and Politics, informed Euronews.

“We don’t need Whelan’s situation to understand Russia’s courts readily succumb to outside political pressure, there is deep-rooted corruption in the legal system, which the expected process is frequently known chiefly due to its absence,” Dr. Radchenko additional, mentioning instances contrary to Russia’s opposition politicians and human rights activists.

Whelan’s attorney has stated they will appeal the verdict provided now but Radchenko said he’d probably need to be a part of a prospective prisoner exchange.

“There is no doubt he is being employed for leverage against the Americans,” Radchenko added.