Maria Butina, who was convicted in the United States for lobbying in the interests of Russia, recorded a video message, which was published on her Instagram account by the head of the Anti-Globalization Movement of Russia, Alexander Ionov.
In this video, the Russian woman said that she was at the Federal Transfer Center in Oklahoma and feels as if she has returned to modern times because she has access to the Internet. She thanked everyone who supports her. She also recalled that her lawyers intend to appeal the verdict and that she faces new expenses for lawyers. Because of this, she asked anybody who has the opportunity to provide her financial support.
“As you know, my lawyers have filed an appeal, and we intend to fight against the injustice that is happening to me and to all Russian citizens because my situation is only a reflection of the current reality. Thank you, guys. Hang in there, Russians don't surrender,” said Butina.
The US District Court for Columbia sentenced Butina to 18 months in prison for her work in the interests of Russia in the United States. According to investigators, Butina unofficially tried to establish contacts with the American conservative circles on behalf of Russia, acting under the direction of former senator and deputy chairman of the Central Bank of Russia, Alexander Torshin.
The Russian woman pleaded guilty to one of the charges. When the judge asked whether she was conspiring to harm the interests of the United States, Butina replied “Yes.”
Earlier, Butina made a deal with the investigation, in which she admitted that she worked with an unnamed "American No. 1" and another person in the United States under the leadership of a Russian official.
According to ABC news channed, “American No. 1” is Republican Paul Ericson, and a Russian official is former deputy chairman of the Central Bank of the Russian Federation, Alexander Torshin. Spanish law enforcement agencies consider Torshin a member of the organized criminal group Taganskaya. Butina, under the leadership of this Russian citizen, "sought to establish informal relations with influential Americans," state the documents.