Arrested in U.S. Russian Maria Butina didn’t do anything that gives a reason to actually call her a spy, said her attorney, Robert Driscoll. “She didn’t do anything, what would spy,” the lawyer assured
Robert Driscoll (center) and Maria Butina (third from right) depicted in the sketch from the courtroom. 18 Jul 2018
(Photo: Dana Verkouteren / AP)
Lawyer arrested in Washington July 15, Russians Maria Butunoi Robert Neil Driscoll described the charges against her as “extremely precarious”. About it the lawyer said in an interview with TASS.
“Not sure what were the motives of the prosecutors. However, the assertion that it is in fact a spy, from my point of view, is not supported by her behavior, especially when you consider how much it is followed,” said Driscoll.
“The case makes no sense. She didn’t do anything, what would spy,” he said.
Driscoll also said that the matter of Butynol not connected with the investigation of Russian meddling in elections in the United States, which leads spectracolor Robert Mueller. “No, and I talked to lawyers spectracolor Muller in this regard”, — said Driscoll. “They didn’t have anything to do with a search warrant nor an arrest. They know about the case, but it is restricted and they were not in any way involved in it,” said Driscoll.
He also could not say whether the defense would appeal the content of Butynol custody. “I’m not sure whether we will appeal or not. Maybe not, maybe not. However, we may re-examine this question at some stage, when it will be justified”, — he explained.
The lawyer said that he was hired to represent the interests of Butenai in February. Butynol needed a lawyer because her spring called to testify, the special Committee on intelligence of the Senate. Butina then a few hours under oath answered questions from U.S. lawmakers and provided them with their interested documents. “I was with her when she gave evidence to the ad hoc Committee on intelligence of the Senate,” said Driscoll.
He also said that the defense is not going to appeal to the Russian government asking for assistance in her case.
U.S. prosecutors accused Butino having links with Russian intelligence
July 18 against Butynol was made the second accusation, if earlier it was considered guilty of conspiracy to operate a foreign agent, the Prosecutor’s office considered it also to blame for the fact that it actually acted as a foreign agent at least 2015. The maximum punishment on the first count involves a prison term of up to five years, on the second — up to ten years imprisonment.
On the same day the U.S. attorney’s office requested that Butino under arrest. Representatives of the American Ministry of justice stated that it maintained contacts with the Russian special services, but because there is a risk of her escape. “Because Butina was exposed as an illegal agent of Russia, there is a serious risk that it will appeal to the government to help her to escape from the United States,” said a statement from the Prosecutor’s office.
According to police, the apartment the Russians were found handwritten notes, which were answers to questions, how to respond to the proposal on the employment of the FSB, and emails — contacts some people believe the US agents of the Russian special services, according to the materials of the case. The documents also stated that Butina lived in the United States with some 56-year-old U.S. citizen, with whom relations are maintained in the hope that it will help her to perform “work in the interests of Russia”, and also corresponded with the “Russian oligarchs”, which discussed the budget for her travel to USA.