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American prisoner in Russia says he's been denied care for tuberculosis

By Calley Hair
Joey Reed joins representatives during a July 29 news conference calling for the release of his son, Trevor Reed, a former U.S. Marine, who has been detained since 2019 in a Russian prison. A spokesperson for the family said Wednesday that Reed was exposed to tuberculosis by another prisoner and is being denied treatment. File photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/ac8d4574c848dfccbcfea201cfb8ade5/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Joey Reed joins representatives during a July 29 news conference calling for the release of his son, Trevor Reed, a former U.S. Marine, who has been detained since 2019 in a Russian prison. A spokesperson for the family said Wednesday that Reed was exposed to tuberculosis by another prisoner and is being denied treatment. File photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 16 (UPI) -- An American who's been detained in Russia for the past two years said he's being denied medical treatment after exposure to tuberculosis in prison, a spokesperson for the U.S. Embassy in Moscow announced on Wednesday.

Trevor Reed, 30, reports that he is coughing up blood.

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"In December #TrevorReed had prolonged exposure to another prisoner with active tuberculosis. Trevor now reports he is coughing up blood and has not received medical care for it. @mfa_russia give Trevor proper medical treatment; better yet, release him," the spokesperson, Jason Rebholz, wrote on Twitter.

Jonathan Franks, a spokesperson for Reed's family, told CNN that Reed "was subjected to a lengthy, close-contact exposure to a prisoner who had active TB in December. That prisoner became gravely ill shortly after his encounter with Trevor.

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"Despite beginning post-exposure prophylaxis for other inmates, Russian authorities have refused to do the same for Trevor and have thus far refused to test him."

"Trevor continues to complain about pain in his chest (related to breathing, not his heart) and authorities continue to refuse him any medical treatment whatsoever," Franks continued. "Any suggestion by Russian authorities that they have provided Trevor meaningful medical care is patently false."

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The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Russian Federal Penitentiary Service have not responded to CNN's request for comment.

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Wednesday's announcement, which surfaced in the midst of ongoing tension between Washington, D.C., and Moscow, heightened concern over how detained Americans are treated in Russian prisons.

Reed is a former U.S. Marine who was convicted of drunkenly assaulting a Russian police officer in 2020. He was sentenced to nine years in prison. A fellow former Marine, Paul Whelan, had been convicted of espionage in a Russian court just one month prior and sentenced to 16 years.

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