Moscow's Lefortovo Court has received an appeal against the detention of Paul Whelan, a multinational citizen who was recently arrested in Russian Federation on espionage charges, spokeswoman for the court Yekaterina Krasnova told Sputnik on Thursday.
Zherebenkov said he visited Whelan on Wednesday and found him in a "very hopeful" mood.
For more, check out CBS News article.
A diplomatic source familiar with the case told CNN on January 4 that Whelan, a discharged US Marines reservist, appeared to have no connection to any national intelligence operation.
Whelan's family have also expressed fears he might be used as a pawn.
Whelan, a MI resident, has had a career in corporate security, his brother said, including at automotive components supplier BorgWarner since 2017.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday the US would demand Whelan's immediate return if the detention was not deemed appropriate.
Whelan's lawyer says if he's not released, he could be stuck in prison for up to a year. So far, U.S. Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman and his staff are the only Westerners who have had contact with the ex-marine.
"Our focus remains on ensuring that Paul is safe, well treated, has a good lawyer, and is coming home". According to family, he was in Russian Federation for a wedding and is a regular world traveler. The Russian Foreign Ministry said that the USA embassy in Moscow had been notified about Whelan's detention in accordance with the bilateral consular convention. He told The Wall Street Journal again from his vacation spot this week that Whelan was bearing the stress of his detention with a, "sense of dignity, with humor and hope".
Whelan is no stranger to the country.
The well-connected news site Rosbalt claimed that he was arrested in the Metropole hotel near the Kremlin after receiving a USB stick with a list of employees of a state agency.