17:48 GMT +323 May 2019
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    US Man Suspected of Espionage in Russia Was Dismissed by Marines for Theft

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    Paul Whelan, a US citizen detained in Russia on spying allegations, was dishonourably discharged by the US Marine Corps for larceny, the Washington Post reports, citing military documents.

    According to Washington Post, Paul Whelan joined the ranks of the US Marine Corps in 1994; in 2004 and 2006 he served in Iraq. He was dismissed for misbehaviour in 2008, after being convicted of several counts of larceny.

    READ MORE: Family of US Citizen Detained in Moscow Claims He Travelled for Wedding — Media

    The publication also notes that Whelan has been visiting Russia regularly since 2007. His friends in Russia told the newspaper that the detainee "highly appreciates" Russia and has a basic knowledge of the Russian language.

    Earlier, the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) detained Paul Whelan on suspicion of espionage and launched a criminal case against him.

    A representative of the US State Department confirmed that the Russian Foreign Ministry has officially notified the US of the detention of an American citizen in Moscow.

    Related:

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    Spy Mania: MI5 Reportedly Makes Secret List of MPs With 'Links' to Russia, China
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    spying, army, Paul Whelan, United States, Russia
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