An airplane carrying former US Marine Trevor Reed landed in Texas early Thursday morning following
Reed was detained in in 2019 after being accused of assaulting a police officer while intoxicated. He was sentenced to nine years in prison, though his family maintained his innocence and the US government described his detention as unjust.
Texas Representative August Pfuger shared photos Reed’s triumphant return home to on Thursday, writing: ‘This is the moment we have all been praying for. WELCOME HOME, Trevor Reed!’
The US Government on Wednesday announced that Reed was exchanged for Konstantin Yaroshenko, a Russian drug trafficker who was serving a 20-year prison sentence in Connecticut.
Reed’s parents spoke with reporters outside their home Wednesday following the announcement of their son’s return home.
‘He looks terrible to us,’ his father, Joey Reed, said. ‘As his parents we know he does not look well. He is very thin, walking strange.’
The family said he would likely go to a military hospital upon his return to receive much-needed treatment.
Reed had been on a hunger strike in protest of the poor treatment he received in Russian prison after he was in close contact with someone who had tuberculosis and had fallen ill. He also had possibly broken a rib, his family said last month.
The 30-year-old veteran’s hunger strike and declining health likely played a role in his surprising release.
According to his parents, Reed had spent 10 days in a prison hospital but was sent back without being tested for tuberculosis. They said he did not receive any ‘meaningful medical care’ outside of an X-ray, which they said was taken incorrectly.
The prisoner swap is the highest-profile release during the Biden administration of an American said to be wrongly imprisoned abroad and comes at a time of poor relations between the US and Russia amid the ongoing war in Ukraine.
Despite Reed’s release, several other Americans remain imprisoned in Russia, including WNBA star Brittney Griner and Michigan corporate security executive Paul Whelan.
Biden, who met in Washington DC with Reed’s parents last month, emphasized that ‘the negotiations that allowed us to bring Trevor home required difficult decisions that I do not take lightly.’
In a statement Wednesday, Trevor’s family asked for privacy.
‘While we understand the interest in Trevor’s story – and as soon as he’s ready, he’ll tell his own story – we’d respectfully ask for some privacy while we address the myriad of health issues brought on by the squalid conditions he was subjected to in his Russian gulag,’ they wrote.
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