May 7, 2024, 2:00 PM

US soldier detained in Russia, accused of theft

US soldier detained in Russia, accused of theft

TEHRAN, May 07 (MNA) – A United States soldier has been detained in Vladivostok on charges of theft in Russia’s latest high-profile detention of an American.

Russia’s RIA state news agency reported on Tuesday that the soldier, identified by the court as Gordon Black, would be detained until July 2.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, US officials told the Associated Press news agency that the soldier, Staff Sergeant Gordon Black, 34, who is married, was stationed in South Korea and was in the process of returning home to Texas.

Instead, they said he traveled to Russia to see a longtime friend.

Another US official, also speaking on condition of anonymity, told the Reuters news agency Black was accused of stealing from a woman.

The soldier’s arrest is likely to further complicate relations between the US and Russia, which have grown increasingly tense as the war in Ukraine has dragged on.

Cynthia Smith, a spokeswoman for the US Army, confirmed that a soldier had been detained on Thursday in Vladivostok, a major Pacific port, on charges of criminal misconduct. She said Russia notified the US and the Army told the soldier’s family.

Asked about the soldier’s detention, a US State Department spokesperson confirmed only that “a US citizen has been detained in Russia”.

“We reiterate our strong warnings about the danger posed to US citizens inside the Russian Federation. US citizens residing or traveling in Russia should depart immediately, as stated in our Travel Advisory for Russia,” the State Department spokesperson said.

The arrest comes less than a year after American soldier Travis King sprinted into North Korea across the heavily fortified border between the Koreas. North Korea later announced that it would expel King, who was returned to the US. He was eventually charged with desertion.


News ID 214832


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