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Russia: Moscow court rejects Whelan’s appeal, lawyer discusses prisoner swap

0 19.11.2019 Инфо

W/S Suspected US spy Paul Whelan's lawyer Vladimir Zherebenkov at Moscow's Lefortovsky Court, Whelan appearing via video screen from Lefortovo prison
M/S Zherebenkov and his translator at court hearing
M/S Woman talking to officer
W/S Courtroom participants
M/S Whelan from Lefortovo prison holding up protest note
M/S Zherebenkov
W/S Courtroom
W/S Zherebenkov and his translator walking out of Moscow City Court
SOT, Vladimir Zherebenkov, Paul Whelan’s lawyer (Russian): “We can only comment on this from an extremely negative perspective, because we consider the judge behaved incorrectly. Paul asked if he could be brought to the court so that he could personally take part [in the hearing], because by the means of a video conference his right to defense were limited. He had an injury a while ago when he was in Iraq, a concussion, and he cannot hear well, and he also has problems with translation. But the judge refused this request and continued to examine the case on its merits. We consider the decision illegal, groundless, since we believe that the remand in custody has exhausted itself, it will already be a whole year by December 29 and there is absolutely no reason to think that he will escape. Everything is based on the speculations and assumptions of the judge and the investigator. Moreover, we believe that Whelan was framed so there was no crime whatsoever. He did not harm the interests of the Russian Federation in any way.” *JUMPCUT AT SOURCE*
SOT, Vladimir Zherebenkov, Paul Whelan’s lawyer (Russian): "The concern is that he is a citizen of four states, yet not a single state has asked to resolve the issue of exchange. Take initiative, gentlemen. We had a meeting with the ambassadors of these four countries last week, we worked very fruitfully, they provided assistance with the provision of certain documents, materials for his protection, and of course we also raised this issue. Let's see how they react. The case, as you undersand yourselves is politicized, everything can happen here, any kind of progression of events." *JUMPCUT AT SOURCE*
SOT, Vladimir Zherebenkov, Paul Whelan’s lawyer (Russian):
Journalist: "When is the next time we will be able to see him in court?"
Zherebenkov: "At the end of December. The Moscow City Court will be responsible for extending it".
Journalist: "When will this be? After the 29th? Before?"
Zherebenkov: "No, this will be after the 25th before the 29th". *JUMPCUT AT SOURCE*
SOT, Vladimir Zherebenkov, Paul Whelan’s lawyer (Russian): “We will appeal. Get acquainted with the case file. Now we are at the main stage, which is familiarising ourselves with the case materials. A lot of interesting things have come up, but unfortunately we cannot comment on these”.
W/S Zherebenkov leaving
W/S Moscow City Court
SCRIPT
The Moscow City Court ruled to extend the detention of alleged US spy Paul Whelan until late December during a hearing on Tuesday.
Whelan’s lawyer Vladimir Zherebenkov called the decision “illegal” and “groundless”. He also said that the judge had rejected Whelan’s plea to personally take part in the hearing.
Zherebenkov further explained that the defence had recommended house arrest for the former US Marine Corps veteran.
The lawyer also commented on the possible prisoner swap involving Whelan, who also holds Canadian, Irish, and British citizenship.
“The concern is that he is a citizen of four states, yet not a single state has asked to resolve the issue of exchange. Take initiative, gentlemen!” he urged.
Whelan was detained in the Russian capital on December 28. If found guilty of espionage, he faces up to 20 years in prison.