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Russian media: US citizen arrested in Russia for allegedly raising money for Ukraine

by Martin Fornusek and The Kyiv Independent news desk February 20, 2024 10:58 AM 1 min read
Illustrative purposes only: A Russian FSB officer in assault gear. (Grigorenko/Getty Images)
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A woman with U.S. and Russian citizenship was arrested in Russia's Yekaterinburg on treason charges, allegedly for raising funds for Ukraine's military, the Russian state-owned news agency TASS reported on Feb. 20, citing the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB).

This is yet another case of detention of a U.S. citizen in Russia, possibly increasing pressure on Washington to seek prisoner exchange.

The news agency did not reveal the name of the detainee but said it was a 33-year-old resident of Los Angeles.

TASS published a video of the woman being escorted by a Russian officer, though her face is not visible as it is covered by a hat.

Several other U.S. citizens are being held in Russia. Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich was detained in Yekaterinburg in March 2023 on espionage charges, which he denies.

Paul Whelan, a former U.S. Marine, was sentenced to 16 years in prison in 2020, also for alleged espionage, an accusation he rejects.

Moscow has previously rejected deals to swap Whelan and Gershkovich with Washington. WNBA star Brittney Griner and another Marine veteran, Trevor Reed, were exchanged for Russian prisoners in the U.S. in 2022.

Brittney Griner calls for more effort to free Americans detained overseas
WNBA star Brittney Griner on Dec. 8 commemorated one year since her release from Russia and called for more effort to free others currently detained overseas, highlighting the plight of wrongfully imprisoned Americans Paul Whelan and Evan Gershkovich, The Hill reported.
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