Former US marine Paul Whelan was convicted of espionage and sentenced to 16 years in prison by a Moscow court last Monday, concluding a months-long case that put additional strain on already complicated US-Russian relations.
From behind a glass screen, Whelan held up a sign in court with phrases on it including “Sham trial,” “No human rights,” and “Paul’s life matters.”
He also called on US President Trump as well as leaders of Ireland, the UK and Canada to “end this political charade.”
Whelan — who is also an Irish, British and Canadian citizen — was detained at a Moscow hotel in December 2018 by Russian authorities who alleged he was involved in an intelligence operation.
Whelan denies the spying charges and says he has been denied proper medical treatment while in detention. His family said they will continue to fight for his release as they maintain he traveled to Moscow to attend a wedding and was arrested on false charges.