RUSSIA: WOMAN FACES ‘BORDERLINE TORTURE’
Russia accused the United States of trying to break the spirit in jail of Maria Butina, a woman U.S. authorities say is a Russian government agent, and complained she was being subjected to “borderline torture.” Butina, a 29-year-old gun rights advocate living in Washington, D.C., was arrested in July and has been accused of acting as a Russian government agent while developing ties with American citizens and infi ltrating political groups. Butina, who pleaded not guilty, was detained without bail pending trial after prosecutors presented evidence suggesting she had connections to Russian intelligence operatives and was being funded by Russian oligarchs. Her case, which Russian authorities allege is fabricated and politically-motivated, has become the latest in a series of irritants between Washington and Moscow. Russia’s U.S. embassy said in a statement on Sunday that Butina had been transferred from a prison in Washington to one in Virginia on Friday without notice or explanation and that her personal belongings had also been confi scated.