On Wednesday, Secretary of State Anthony J. Blinken said the U.S. government has been “intensely engaged” in efforts to persuade Moscow to free former Princeton resident Evan Gershkovich, who works for the Wall Street Journal as a reporter and has been held in custody in Russia for more than a month. He was arrested in March and charged with espionage during a reporting trip in the country.
New Jersey Governor Phill Murphy has been working with U.S. officials to have Gershkovich released. In a recent press conference, Murphy referred to the reporter as a “Jersey guy” who has been jailed by “that complete pig, Putin.” “Evan still has huge roots in Princeton. I’ve been back and forth on many occasions with his mom and dad and his many friends in Princeton,” he said.
Gershkovich is the child of Russian emigres and graduated from Princeton High School in 2010. He was captain of the high school’s soccer team, which won the state championship.
Last month, an appeal by Gershkovich, 31, was rejected by a Russian court, and he remains in custody. He’s been accused of gathering information on the Russian military, which the Wall Street Journal has disputed. If convicted, he could face 20 years in prison.
Gershkovich has been held in Russia’s notorious Lefortovo Prison, where inmates are rarely allowed visits from lawyers. He apparently has been receiving letters in jail and was said to be thankful and reading every letter that he’s received, according to the Journal’s publisher, Almar Latour.Click here to leave a comment