U.S. Senator Ben Sasse, a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, issued the following statement after a Russian court sentenced opposition leader Alexei Navalny to 3.5 years in prison.

"This sentence from a kangaroo court only proves that Vladimir Putin is scared of the Russian people who want freedom and the rule of law. Navalny showed immense courage returning to the oppressive Putin regime, and the United States stands behind Navalny and the thousands of pro-democracy protestors who have unjustly been arrested over the past few weeks."