Russian Detention Watchdog Refutes Reports About Physical Violence Against Whelan

MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 20th September, 2021) The Russian Federal Penitentiary Service (FSIN) in Russia's Republic of Mordovia refuted on Sunday the reports about US citizen Paul Whelan, who is serving a 16-year prison sentence in the country on espionage charges, having been hit by one of the prison officers, citing available video footage.

Earlier in the day, Whelan's lawyer Olga Karlova told Sputnik that one of the prison's junior staff had allegedly hit her client. According to the lawyer, Whelan's brother told her that there was video footage of the alleged assault.

"The information that convict Paul Whelan was allegedly hit by someone at the penal colony's administration building does not correspond to reality and is a provocation," the FSIN said in a statement, adding that Whelan's presence in the administration building was recorded.

The FSIN said it was ready to send the tapes to proper authorities.

Whelan, who is also a citizen of Canada, Ireland and the United Kingdom, was arrested in Russia in December 2018. A court in Moscow sentenced him to 16 years in prison for espionage last June.