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John Edward Tobin

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February 28, 2001 | JOHN DANISZEWSKI, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A Fulbright scholar arrested on marijuana charges in Russia became the latest target of a reinvigorated campaign against alleged spies here, with a public accusation Tuesday painting him as a would-be U.S. intelligence agent. The Federal Security Service, the main successor to the KGB, charged that 24-year-old John Edward Tobin was in Russia to polish his language skills and pick up slang for a future espionage career and that he had been trained in intelligence techniques in the United States.
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NEWS
February 28, 2001 | JOHN DANISZEWSKI, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A Fulbright scholar arrested on marijuana charges in Russia became the latest target of a reinvigorated campaign against alleged spies here, with a public accusation Tuesday painting him as a would-be U.S. intelligence agent. The Federal Security Service, the main successor to the KGB, charged that 24-year-old John Edward Tobin was in Russia to polish his language skills and pick up slang for a future espionage career and that he had been trained in intelligence techniques in the United States.
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NEWS
April 26, 2001 | From Times Wire Reports
Prosecutors dropped drug-dealing charges against an American student, saying they would seek a four-year sentence on the lesser charge of drug abuse instead. Investigators in Voronezh had threatened John Edward Tobin with up to 15 years in prison for allegedly running a marijuana den. Officials also hinted he was a spy in training. But prosecutors dropped the drug-dealing charges after witnesses provided no incriminating evidence. Tobin, 24, a Fulbright scholar, denies all the accusations.
NEWS
April 25, 2001 | From Times Wire Reports
An American Fulbright scholar accused of dealing drugs in Russia pleaded innocent as his trial opened with the prosecutor contesting police evidence. An investigator testified that she fabricated the amount of marijuana found on John Edward Tobin. The prosecutor accused police of inflating the amount and said she was "ashamed" to be involved in the case. Tobin, 24, of Ridgefield, Conn., was arrested Jan. 26 outside a nightclub, allegedly carrying a matchbox containing marijuana.
NEWS
June 8, 2001 | From Times Wire Reports
An appeals court in the Russian city of Voronezh slashed the sentence of an American Fulbright scholar convicted on drug charges from 37 months to a year, though his family and U.S. lawmakers continued to protest his imprisonment. John Edward Tobin's case has attracted wide attention since Russian security officials publicly accused the 24-year-old of being a spy in training. No espionage charges were filed. Tobin has said he was framed.
NEWS
July 27, 2001 | From Times Wire Reports
John Edward Tobin, a U.S. Fulbright scholar jailed in Russia on a drug conviction, will be eligible to seek early release beginning Thursday, a prison spokesman said. Tobin was convicted in April of obtaining, possessing and distributing drugs in Voronezh--a city 300 miles south of Moscow--where he was studying. Tobin, 24, of Connecticut, was sentenced to 37 months, but a higher court overturned the distribution conviction on appeal and reduced his sentence to one year.
NEWS
June 27, 2001 | From Times Wire Reports
Russian security officials said they may bring espionage charges against John Edward Tobin, a U.S. Fulbright scholar jailed on a drug conviction in Russia. His lawyers called the claim a dubious legal bid to keep Tobin behind bars. An official at the Moscow headquarters of the Federal Security Service, or FSB, said the new accusations against Tobin could be based on the testimony of a Russian scholar who claimed that the American tried to recruit him as a spy.
NEWS
April 28, 2001 | From Times Wire Services
An American Fulbright scholar was sentenced to more than three years in prison on drug charges Friday in a verdict his lawyer said was influenced by accusations from Russia's secret service that his client was a spy in training. John Edward Tobin, 24, of Ridgefield, Conn., had firmly asserted his innocence. During the trial, a prosecutor who said police apparently doctored reports in the case asked for the most serious drug trafficking charges against him to be thrown out.
NEWS
August 3, 2001 | From Associated Press
American Fulbright scholar John Edward Tobin won a recommendation that he be released as early as today from the Russian prison where he is serving a drug sentence, and Russian authorities appeared eager to end his high-profile imprisonment. Tobin, 24, became eligible for parole Thursday, and the parole board unanimously recommended he be released, satisfied by his behavior at the prison in the southern town of Rossosh.
NEWS
August 4, 2001 | MAURA REYNOLDS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Russia freed American Fulbright scholar John Edward Tobin from prison Friday, six months after he was arrested on drug charges in the western city of Voronezh and accused of being a spy in training. After Tobin's arrest, Russian officials frequently charged that the 24-year-old political scientist's education--Russian lessons at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, Calif., and interrogation techniques at the Army Intelligence Center at Ft. Huachuca, Ariz.
NEWS
March 3, 2001 | JOHN DANISZEWSKI, TIMES STAFF WRITER
There's one espionage suspect on trial, a U.S. Fulbright scholar was branded a spy in training and held on drug charges, and the United States is accusing Russia of buying surveillance secrets from a high-level FBI agent. Into this ferment, Russia's former spymaster emerged Friday from semi-retirement to say that all the "spy mania" is overblown.
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