A Russian court has rejected Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich’s appeal against his pre-trial detention.
The reporter was formally charged with spying in Russia earlier this month and has been held at the notorious Lefortovo prison in Moscow since.
Mr Gershkovich, 32, appeared in a Moscow courtroom today to appeal against the decision to keep him in a former KGB prison until at least 29 May.
The reporter stood in a glass box inside the courtroom with his arms crossed and did not say anything.
Mr Gershkovich faces up to 20 years behind bars if convicted.
On his arrest, Russia’s Federal Security Service accused him of trying to obtain classified information about a Russian arms factory.
Mr Gershkovich became the first reporter for an American news outlet to be arrested on espionage charges in Russia since the Cold War and has always “categorically” denied the allegations.
US Ambassador to Russia, Lynne Tracy, who attended Tuesday’s hearing, said Mr Gershkovich “deserves to go home”.
Speaking outside the court in Moscow, Ms Tracy said a day earlier she had visited the journalist in prison adding: “He is in good health and remains strong”.
President Joe Biden has condemned the detention of Mr Gershkovich, saying the US had made it “clear” that Russia’s actions were “totally illegal”.