Russia detains American in Moscow over suspected spying

Minnie Murray
December 31, 2018

The domestic security agency the detained individual as Paul Whelan.

The Federal Security Service, or FSB, the top KGB successor agency, said that the American man detained in Moscow on Friday.

No other details were immediately available and the U.S. embassy in Moscow has so far not commented.

There was no immediate comment from the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, the White House or U.S. State Department.

Russian Federation has been entangled in multiple spy scandals in the West.

The FSB said the American had been detained "while carrying out an act of espionage" on 28 December and that a criminal case had been opened. In addition to a response to Butina's arrest, Rohde pointed out that Russian President Vladimir Putin was sending a clear message to President Donald Trump for the New Year.

If convicted of espionage, Whelan faces up to 20 years in jail.

Russia's relations with the U.S. have soured since Moscow annexed the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine in 2014.

This is a developing story, check back for updates.

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