Speed Reads


Russia convicts American of spying

A former U.S. Marine, Paul Whelan, was convicted of espionage in a Russian court and sentenced to 16 years in prison on Monday, The Washington Post reports. He was arrested after allegedly being handed a flash drive containing "state secrets" while he was in Russia to attend a wedding. He said he thought the flash drive contained an acquaintance's vacation photos.

Whelan, 50, said during the trial that he had been framed, calling his prosecution a "political charade." He said Russia was "taking political hostages" because it "feels impotent in the world." Whelan's attorney said he planned to appeal. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has demanded Whelan's release. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has called the case open-and-shut, saying Whelan was caught "red-handed."