Jurisdiction for Seleznev up for debate - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Jurisdiction for Seleznev up for debate

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 by Krystal Paco

Guam - Whether the District Court of Guam has jurisdiction over cyber thief Roman Seleznev is still up for debate.

Yesterday's hearing for a petition for his removal was postponed because of a motion filed by Seleznev's attorney Patrick Civille seeking his immediate release based on "outrageous government misconduct".  Civille argues Seleznev's was illegally removed or kidnapped from the Maldives to Guam. Seleznev was indicted several years ago on charges of aggravated identity theft and bank fraud in Washington State.  Assistant US Attorney Marivic David argued that the only issue before the federal judge in Guam is to establish whether he is in fact the individual named in the   indictment all other issues that are being raised should be decided in the district where the indictment is pending.

In his response brief filed today, Civille argues because federal courts are powerless to act without jurisdiction, the preliminary determination of whether there is jurisdiction over a defendant must be heard in the district of removal.  He also questions whether any US court has jurisdiction over his client as a result of his "illegal kidnapping before being spirited away to another district thousands of miles away."

Seleznev has been detained on Guam for the last two weeks. The US Secret Service describes him as one of the world's most prolific traffickers of stolen information accused of defrauding Chase Bank, Capital One, and Citibank.

Late this afternoon Judge Gatewood issued an order for both parties to file supplemental briefs focusing on the defense's assertion that her court does not have personal jurisdiction over Seleznev to even conduct a removal proceeding. 

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