BBG Chair Jeff Shell Detained in Russia

Denied entry into country

Jeff Shell, Broadcasting Board of Governors board chair and chairman of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group, was denied entry to Russia late Tuesday, according to BBG, which oversees government backed international media outlets including Voice of America, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and the Middle East Broadcasting Networks.

Shell was detained at Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport and denied entry into the country despite having a passport and visa, according to BBG

"Shell was denied entry into the country despite having a valid passport and Russian visa, and subsequently detained in a locked room for several hours, before being accompanied by Russian security officials to board a flight to Amsterdam," BBG said in a statement. "No explanation has yet been given to Shell, or the BBG, for his detention."

Shell told colleagues that airport security said the ban was permanent.

BBG officials said they had met with U.S. ambassador John Tefft in Moscow and that he and the State Department were looking into it.