Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich’s trial to begin June 26, Russian court says

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(LONDON) — The first hearing in the espionage trial of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich has been scheduled for June 26 in Russia, according to the Sverdlovsk Regional Court.

The Russian prosecutor’s office announced earlier this month that the reporter would stand trial on espionage charges, officially ending any future pre-detention appeals. He’s been detained for more than a year.

The journalist, a U.S. citizen, was arrested in March 2023 by Russia’s powerful domestic intelligence agency, the Federal Security Service, or FSB, while on a reporting trip to the city of Yekaterinburg. He has since been held in Moscow’s Lefortovo prison.

Russian prosecutors earlier this month said they had approved the criminal indictment against Gershkovich, which alleges that the reporter was working on instructions from the CIA as he “collected secret information” about a defense industry contractor in the Sverdlovsk region.

The trial is scheduled to begin behind closed doors on June 26, the court said Monday.

The charges against Gershkovich are “false and baseless,” Dow Jones CEO and Wall Street Journal Publisher Almar Latour and Wall Street Journal Editor in Chief Emma Tucker said in a joint statement released as the trial was announced last week.

“Russia’s latest move toward a sham trial is, while expected, deeply disappointing and still no less outrageous,” the executives said. “Evan has spent 441 days wrongfully detained in a Russian prison for simply doing his job. Evan is a journalist.”

They called on the U.S. government to “redouble efforts to get Evan released.”

ABC News’ Joe Simonetti, Tanya Stukalova and Patrick Reevell contributed to this report.

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