Washington—Representatives Eliot L. Engel Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, and Michael McCaul, the Committee’s Ranking Member, released the following statement calling on Vladimir Putin’s regime to release Paul Whelan, a U.S. citizen wrongfully imprisoned in Russia. Yesterday, the Russian government concluded a secretive, sham of a trial and announced its intention to seek a draconian 18-year prison sentence in a Russian labor camp.
“Paul has already had to endure more than we could even imagine—all at the hands of the Putin regime, which has shown complete disdain for the rule of law and human rights. We demand that President Putin end this mockery of justice and release Paul Whelan so that he may finally return home.” – Chairman Eliot L. Engel and Ranking Member McCaul.
- In December 2018, Paul Whelan was arrested on false espionage charges and has since been wrongfully imprisoned by the Putin regime.
- The Russian government has failed to present any credible evidence against him and refused to grant Paul the rights and freedoms necessary to defend himself.
- He also has been cruelly denied necessary medical care and the ability to speak to his family.