MOSCOW, February 14 (RAPSI, Evgeniya Sokolova) – The Moscow City Court has upheld a ruling of the Lefortovsky District Court extending detention of Ukrainian journalist Roman Sushchenko, who stands charged with espionage, RAPSI reported from the courtroom on Tuesday.

The court has dismissed an appeal filed by journalist’s legal defense. The case was considered behind closed doors, Sushchenko is to stay in detention until April 30.

According to Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB), the Ukrainian citizen "purposively collected classified information about the Armed Forces and National Guard of Russia." Leak of data abroad could cause damage to the national defense capability, the FSB claimed.

On October 7, charges were brought against Sushchenko.  He could face up to 20 years in prison if found guilty.

Ukrinform news agency earlier confirmed that Sushchenko has been acting as its reporter since 2002. Since 2010, he has been working as Ukrinform’s personal correspondent in France. According to the agency, Sushchenko arrived in Moscow on private business during his vacation and was arrested immediately upon his arrival.

Ukrinform repelled accusations against Sushchenko calling him "a journalist with years of unblemished professional reputation".