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US authorities keeping Russian citizen Levashov in jail in poor conditions

February 08, 0:47 UTC+3 WASHINGTON

He is currently kept in Bridgeport prison, Connecticut

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Pyotr Levashov

Pyotr Levashov

© EPA/Luca Piergiovanni/Pool

WASHINGTON, February 8. /TASS/. U.S. authorities are keeping the Russian citizen Pyotr Levashov, extradited from Spain, in a jail in Connecticut in poor conditions, the Russian Embassy said in a statement on Wednesday after the diplomats’ meeting with the arrested man.

"The Embassy is deeply concerned over the situation around Levashov, who turned into a yet another victim of the U.S. secret services’ chasing of Russian citizens worldwide," the statement said. "Levashov is currently kept in Bridgeport prison, Connecticut. Russian diplomats visited him yesterday."

"We would like to point out the inappropriate conditions, in which he is kept, with signs of discrimination and harsh treatment," the embassy said.

According to the diplomats’ account, the Americans placed Levashov into a cell 2 m by 2 m that does not have practically any lighting.

"In the cell, Levashov is subjected to practically permanent impact of noise coming from neighboring compartments," the statement said. "For this reason, and also due to the absence of a mattress [the prison authorities gave him only footcloth 1 cm thick] he is deprived of normal sleep."

"In addition, he denied communications with other inmates, outdoor walks and phone calls to his family in Russia," the diplomats said.

"This inhumane treatment has wielded impact on his health," the embassy said. "The prison physician examined Levashov but he has not received yet any of the administered drugs."

"The Russian Embassy urges the Department of State and the Department of Justice to take prompt measures towards ensuring Levashov’s legitimate rights and conditions of stay in jail that would rule out encroachments on his human dignity," the document said.

"The Embassy also demands that he be given the medicines for treating the diseases identified by the physician," it said. "We expect interference in the situation on the part of human rights organizations."

Pyotr Levashov was detained in Spain at a U.S. request on April 7, 2017. The Americans accuse him of computer hacking, the generating of malware and mass spamming. They claim he was involved in setting up of a network of infected computers that were controlled by hackers.

On October 3, 2017, Spain’s National Judicial Council passed a decision to extradite the man to Spain.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexei Meshkov said in October 2017 Russia objected to the extraditions of its citizens to the U.S. He said it with reference to Pyotr Levashov and Alexander Vinnik, a Russian citizen arrested in Greece.

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