- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 30, 2020

Trevor Reed, a former U.S. Marine accused of drunkenly assaulting two Russian police officers last summer, was found guilty in a Moscow court Thursday and sentenced to serve nine years in a penal colony.

Mr. Reed, 29, was found guilty of using violence against officials who detained him following a party in Moscow last August and promptly sentenced, Russian state media reported. He has denied the charges.

“This is completely a political case,” Mr. Reed said after the verdict was announced, The Moscow Times reported. “I will be asking my government for political support.”

John J. Sullivan, President Trump’s ambassador to Russia, slammed the outcome in a statement issued by the U.S. Embassy in Moscow later Thursday.

“This conviction, and a sentence of nine years, for an alleged crime that so obviously did not occur, is ridiculous. I cannot even say ‘miscarriage of justice’ because clearly ‘justice’ was not even considered. This was theater of the absurd,” he said in the statement.

The U.S. “will not rest until Trevor is freed and returns home,” the ambassador added.

Mr. Reed, a Texas native, joined the U.S. Marine Corps after college and received an honorable discharge upon completing his service, according to a website set up by his supporters. He had traveled to Moscow in early 2019 to visit his Russian girlfriend and take lessons in her native language, the site says.

Prosecutors accused Mr. Reed of assaulting two police officers after getting drunk at a party. He faced a maximum sentence of 10 years in a penal colony, and prosecutors asked for nine years and eight months.

Another former U.S. Marine, Paul Whelan, was sentenced in Russia last month to spend 16 years in a penal colony after being convicted of spying. He has maintained his innocence as well.

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