Russian Political Prisoner Maria Butina to Be Freed by the US
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)
US dirty war on Russia by other means takes many forms — including arrest and detention of its nationals — falsely charged, prosecuted, and imprisoned for political reasons.
Russia’s envoy to the US Anatoly Antonov earlier accused Washington of “unjustly hunting for Russian citizens not only in the US but in other countries too.”
Police state America operates like similar regimes worldwide — extrajudicially against targeted individuals, subjected to show trials or none at all, declared guilty by accusations, followed by gulag mistreatment.
Maria Butina was guilty of being a Russian national in the US at the wrong time.
Arrested by the FBI in July 2018, she was detained without bond, falsely charged with operating as an unregistered Russian agent.
She’s a private citizen with no Kremlin connection, no evidence suggesting otherwise. Accusations against her were fabricated.
She’s a visa-approved American University graduate, earning a master’s degree in international relations, “not an agent of the Russian Federation,” her lawyer Robert Driscoll earlier explained, adding:
She’s “not a proxy for any of the serious and substantial issues that our country has with Russia right now.”
Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova denounced her arrest, detention, and mistreatment, calling it part of the campaign in America to “stoke Russophobic hysteria.”
Despite innocent of bogus charges against her and posing no flight risk, she was denied bail, largely held in suffocating solitary confinement, and given no proper medical care – aiming to break her will by gross mistreatment.
Last December, her lawyers and federal prosecutors struck a plea bargain. Despite guilty of no wrongdoing, she pleaded guilty to “conspiracy” against the US (sic), said she acted as a foreign agent which she’s not, and agreed to cooperate with federal authorities in return for leniency.
Since wrongfully imprisoned, she endured brutalizing physical and emotional mistreatment, amounting to torture.
Under constitutionally banned “cruel and unusual punishment,” most people will say anything to stop pain and suffering.
Butina and other wrongfully imprisoned Russian nationals are victims of US imperial contempt for the rule of law and fundamental rights of everyone.
In April, she was unjustifiably sentenced to 18 months imprisonment for political reasons.
At the time, Russian lower house’s State Duma International Affairs Committee chairman Leonid Slutsky denounced her persecution and mistreatment, saying:
“The vaunted American justice in Butina’s case is an example of modern political inquisition. All charges were fabricated.”
“The entire process is clearly politicized, starting with the fact that she was detained on the eve of the meeting of the Russian and US presidents in Helsinki, and it was hardly a coincidence.”
Her 18-month sentence included nine months already served. On October 25, she’ll be released and deported to Russia unless US dark forces decide to brutalize her longer.
Before sentencing in April, she said “I came to the United States not under any orders, but with hope, and now nothing remains but penitence.”
On return to Russia, she’ll be treated like a human being again, her rights respected, polar opposite her police state mistreatment in the US.
Russia’s US envoy Anatoly Antonov explained that despite no legal obstacles preventing her from returning home on release Friday, manufactured issues could delay her departure.
When home on Russian soil after her horrific ordeal, she’ll be able to breathe free for the first time since it all began.
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