Edmond Pope Released from Russian Prison
Eleven days. Before christmas edmond pope received an unexpected gift. Russian authorities announced that president vladimir putin had pardoned him and cleared him of all charges. Popat arrived in russia. Nine months earlier on business he'd been contacted by pennsylvania. State universities applied research laboratory to learn more about a new technology being developed in russia rocket propelled torpedoes given pope's background as an ex. Us naval intelligence officer. He knew russian officials would likely keep tabs on him. He expected as much so naturally when he purchased five technical reports from a russian professor at bowman state university in moscow named anatoly bobken. He took proper precautions. Both pope and babkin signed contracts acknowledging. The reports did not contain any classified information yet. On april third two thousand members of the russian federal security service arrested him and brought him to lefortovo prison for questioning. He stood accused of espionage. At first pope felt the arrest was a joke but his tune changed when authorities locked him in an eight by fifteen foot prison cell for days. Pope was interrogated around the clock. The russians believed he was a high level spy working for the cia to make him miserable. They kept his cell at a chilling forty five degrees fahrenheit. He experienced no physical abuse. But witness the corporeal torture of at least two fellow inmates and he was subjected to sleep deprivation and other forms of psychological warfare. Days turned two weeks which turned two months eventually. Pope was moved to a communal six bunks cell in the prison there. His cellmates chain smoked cigarettes eight. His limited provisions and on one occasion stole his medicine when it came time for a trial in december the proceedings were held behind closed doors pokes lawyer demanded an acquittal outlining to a judge. The reasons why pope had done nothing wrong and how the prosecution had failed to provide proper evidence but ultimately on december seventh the court convicted pope and sentenced him to twenty years in prison the maximum he could receive that time would be spent performing hard labor. Which is why. Pope was shocked to learn that the russian president had pardoned him almost immediately after the ruling he may have spent two hundred fifty three days in custody but he never served a day of his official sentence. Within hours of the announcement pope appeared before the press responding to a reporter's question about how it felt to be a free man again. He said i have mixed feelings. I'm glad but at the same time. I'm sad that i may have caused harm to the relations between our countries. Of course this diplomatic response was made before he and his wife sherry boarded a plane headed to an american hospital in germany. The media would have to get the full story later once. He confirmed that he wasn't about to die.