[Ed. – A Justice Department with misplaced priorities is getting Americans arrested abroad now, for absolutely no payoff in crime-solving or national security.]
Retired U.S. Marine Paul Whelan faces up to 20 years in prison after his Dec. 28 arrest in Moscow on spying charges. It happened just over a week after Russian President Vladimir Putin indicated he would not resort to retaliation, given the U.S. arrest of accused Russian agent Maria Butina.
Whelan, accused of being caught while “carrying out an act of espionage,” is currently in custody of Russian authorities. Whelan’s brother David Whelan released a statement on behalf of the family, saying that Paul, who served multiple tours in Iraq, was in Moscow to attend a wedding.
“We noticed that he was not in communication on the 28th, which was very much out of character for him even when he was traveling,” the family said.