U.S. Musician Michael Travis Leake Detained in Russia on Drug Trafficking Charges
American musician Michael Travis Leake has been detain in Moscow on allegations of drug trafficking. The Khamovniki District Court of Moscow accused Leake of organizing a drug trafficking business involving young people.
Specifically selling the drug mephedrone. If convicted, he could face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
Background and Musical Career of Michael Travis Leake
Travis Leake, also known as Michael Travis Leake, is a U.S. citizen and musician who has been active in the Russian music scene.
He has worked as the lead vocalist and producer for the Moscow-based group Lovi Noch for over five years.
Additionally, Michael Travis Leake has contributed as a lyricist and backup vocalist for various Russian punk rock bands.
Leake is also the president of Red Decades Records. A company focused on discovering and promoting talent in the Russian music market.
The U.S. State Department has acknowledged the reports of a U.S. citizen detained in Moscow. Ensuring the safety and security of U.S. citizens abroad is a top priority for the department. However, no further details were provided due to privacy considerations.
Michael Travis Leake arrest follows other high-profile cases involving foreign citizens in Russia. Earlier this year, Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich was arrest on suspicion of espionage and is currently in pre-trial detention.
Similarly, WNBA star Brittney Griner faced drug-related charges in Moscow last year and was sentenced to nine years in prison.
Griner, who had a medical marijuana card in Arizona. Spent 10 months in Russian detention before being released in a prisoner swap.