Do people want to know Who Is Ex-Marine Paul Whelan? Why Did Whelan Go To Jail? There are various questions speculating about Mr. Whelan and the reason behind his going to jail. Following the release of basketball star Brittney Griner from Russian captivity, US President Joe Biden faces new questions about another imprisoned American: former US marine Paul Whelan.
Here’s what we know about Mr. Whelan and his case.
Who is Ex-Marine Paul Whelan?
Mr. Whelan has citizenship in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the Irish Republic. Born in Canada to British parents, he moved to the US as a child and now lives in Novi, Michigan. He joined the US Marine Reserves in 1994, which is about six years after he started working as a police officer in Michigan, according to military records.
In the early 2000s, he worked as an IT project manager for a company called Kelly Services. However, within a few years, he joined the Marines and went to Iraq for the first of two tours in 2004. While he was in the Marines, he went to Russia for the first time. He wrote about it on his website, which was taken down a few years ago. He showed pictures of his trip and said that he had a “pretty good time” in Moscow and St. Petersburg.
But in 2008, Mr. Whelan was kicked out of the marines for lousy behavior even though he had reached the rank of staff sergeant. When the Pentagon released his records, it said that the charges were for theft. CNN says that he was accused of using someone else’s SSN and “writing bad checks.”
It turns out that his family didn’t know what was going on. Mr. Whelan kept working for Kelly Services, and in 2010 he was given the title of senior manager of global security and investigations. According to court documents, he was in charge of the company’s campus security group. Among his duties were managing and leading investigations and doing some buying.
In 2016, he left the company to become the director of global security for BorgWarner, a US company that makes parts for cars. A company statement said that Mr. Whelan was “in charge of security” at facilities in Michigan and around the world. It has no offices or factories in Russia.
Why did Whelan Go To Jail?
Since his first trip to Russia in 2006, Mr. Whelan has been there several more times and learned a lot about the country. Because he knew a lot about Russia, he was asked to go to the wedding of a fellow former marine in Moscow in December 2018, his brother David told the BBC’s Newshour after his arrest.
David Whelan said, “His friend thought that Paul could help a group of Americans who had never been to Moscow before because he had already been to the Kremlin, walked around Red Square, and used the metro.”
On December 28, though, he was arrested by the Russian FSB, which said he had been “caught spying” in Moscow. At the time, there were rumors that he had been caught getting a digital storage device with a list of intelligence officials on it. However, these rumors could not be confirmed.
People also talked about other possible reasons why Mr. Whelan was arrested. One idea was that he was taken into custody so that he could be traded for Maria Butina, a Russian gun rights activist who was jailed in the US in December 2018. In October 2019, she went back to Russia, where she came from.
David Whelan, on the other hand, has said that the accusations are not valid. “I can’t imagine how someone with a law enforcement background who is also a former US Marine, and who is now working in corporate security and is also aware of the risks of travel, would have broken any law let alone the law related to espionage,” he said.