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Butina deported to Russia after release from prison

Maria Butina, the Russian who was sentenced to prison after pleading guilty to conspiring to act as a foreign agent, was deported to Russia on Friday after her release from prison.

After serving more than 15 months behind bars, Butina was released Friday into the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and was deported. She had been serving her sentence in a low-security prison in Tallahassee, Fla.

She arrived in Moscow on Saturday and was greeted by her father and Russian journalists, Reuters reports.

At the airport, she reportedly told supporters that “Russians never surrender.”{mosads}

Butina was arrested last year and sentenced to 18 months in prison after admitting to working with a Russian official and two Americans to infiltrate the National Rifle Association in an attempt to influence U.S. policy toward Russia. The judge said her actions had the potential to “jeopardize national security.”

While she was scheduled for release in early November, her attorney said a change in federal law allowed her release date to be pushed up based on good behavior.

Her release comes after the Russian Embassy in Washington demanded her release after her arrest, arguing she was being detained on “trumped-up charges.”

Tags Maria Butina National Rifle Association Russia

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