Russian agent Maria Butina released from prison, awaits deportation

Russian agent Maria Butina released from prison, awaits deportation
© Getty Images

Maria ButinaMaria ButinaAmerican imprisoned in Russia calls for Biden to resolve 'hostage diplomacy situation' in Putin meeting Fake German heiress Anna Sorokin taken into custody, faces deportation US-convicted Russian operative Maria Butina visits Navalny in jail MORE, who pleaded guilty in December to conspiring to act as a foreign agent, was released from prison Friday, according to her lawyer.

Attorney Robert Driscoll told The Hill in an email that Butina was released from a prison in Tallahassee, Fla., into the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement and will be deported to Russia.

Reuters previously reported on Butina's expected release from a low-security prison in Tallahassee.


Butina, 31, pleaded guilty last year and admitted to working with a Russian official and two Americans to infiltrate the National Rifle Association in an attempt to influence the U.S. policy toward Russia.

She was sentenced to 18 months in prison.

The Russian official Butina said she conspired with was later named as Alexander Torshin, a deputy governor of Russia's central bank. One of the Americans was identified as her boyfriend, conservative political activist Paul Erickson.

After her arrest, the Russian Embassy in Washington demanded her release, arguing she was being detained on "trumped-up charges."

"We will continue demanding the release of Maria, victim of the blatant outrage," the embassy said in a tweet at the time. "If our American partners think they can comment on the detention of people who violated Russia's state border, they should start by commenting [on] the situation around the political prisoner held in their country."

Updated at 10:38 a.m.