Russia Denies Holding Prisoner Swap Talks With U.S. Over Detained American

MOSCOW (Reuters) -
Paul Whelan, a former U.S. Marine who was arrested for alleged spying, listens to the verdict in a courtroom at the Moscow City Court in Moscow, Russia, Monday, June 15, 2020.(Sofia Sandurskaya, Moscow News Agency photo via AP)

Russia’s Foreign Ministry denied on Tuesday a report that Moscow and Washington were in talks over a possible prisoner swap that could secure the release of Paul Whelan, a former U.S. marine jailed for spying, the RIA news agency reported.

Whelan was convicted of spying last June and sentenced to 16 years in jail. He denies the charges against him. His lawyer told Reuters on Monday a swap was being discussed that could see Whelan freed within two to three months.