The release ends a nearly three-year ordeal for Reed, who was sentenced to nine years in prison in July 2020 for endangering the “life and health” of Russian police officers in an altercation. Reed and his family have denied the charges against him.
“Our family has been living a nightmare. Today, our prayers have been answered and Trevor is safely on his way back to the United States,” Reed’s family said in a statement.
Reed’s release is part of a prisoner swap for Russian citizen Konstantin Yaroshenko, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on her official Telegram channel.
President Joe Biden confirmed the release.
“Today, we welcome home Trevor Reed and celebrate his return to the family that missed him dearly. Trevor, a former US Marine, is free from Russian detention. I heard in the voices of Trevor’s parents how much they’ve worried about his health and missed his presence. And I was delighted to be able to share with them the good news about Trevor’s freedom,” Biden said in a statement.
Concerns about his health mounted in recent weeks, prompting his parents to stage a protest outside the White House last month to bring awareness to their son’s case. Biden subsequently met with the parents to discuss efforts to bring Reed home.
Wednesday’s release also brings renewed attention to the case of American Paul Whelan, a US citizen and former Marine who was detained at a Moscow hotel in December 2018 and arrested on espionage charges, which he has consistently and vehemently denied.
In his statement welcoming Reed’s release, Biden said his administration “won’t stop” until Whelan is home.
This story is breaking and will be updated.
Quoted from Various Sources
Published for: WATPFC