Former journalist Ivan Safronov formally charged with treason
Former investigative journalist and Roscosmos communications advisor Ivan Safronov has been formally charged with treason.
According to his lawyer, Ivan Pavlov, Safronov pleads not guilty.
Ivan Safronov previously worked as an investigative journalist reporting on Russia’s military-industrial complex for the Russian business newspapers Kommersant and Vedomosti. He went to work as a communications advisor to the head of Russia’s space corporation Roscosmos in May 2020.
On July 7, federal agents arrested him on treason charges. According to the investigation, Safronov passed classified information to Czech intelligence. Safronov has denied any guilt, while his defense lawyers maintain that he is being persecuted for his previous journalistic work. Moscow’s Lefortovo Court jailed him for two months that same day.
On July 13, dozens of people held single-person demonstrations in support of Safronov outside of Moscow’s Lefortovo Pretrial Detention Center. Law-enforcement officials detained at least 19 people, most of them journalists.