Judge denies request to dismiss hacking charges

By Martha Bellisle, Associated Press | Posted - Dec. 15, 2015 at 4:00 p.m.



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SEATTLE (AP) — The latest on the trial of a Russian man charged with hacking into U.S. businesses (all times local):

2:45 p.m.

A federal judge has denied a request to toss charges against a Russian man accused of hacking into U.S. business, saying the U.S. agents who took him into custody did nothing wrong.

Roman Seleznev's lawyers had claimed that the agents kidnapped him from a Maldives airport in violation of local and U.S. law so his indictment should be dismissed.

But U.S. District Judge Richard Jones said nothing in the testimony or evidence presented during two-day hearing suggested that the agents' actions amounted to shocking and outrageous misconduct.

Jones said that appeals courts have ruled that the manner in which a person is brought to trial doesn't impact the court's ability to try him, with a few exceptions. Those exceptions include torture or outrageous misconduct, but neither was the case in Seleznev's arrest. Therefore, Jones said he is denying the motion to dismiss.

Seleznev is scheduled to go to trial on a 40-count indictment in May.

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11:40 a.m.

A lawyer for a Russian man charged with hacking into U.S. businesses told a federal judge that U.S. agents illegally kidnapped him at a Maldives airport in what she called an unlawful operation.

During her closing argument, Andrea Ostrovsky said the agents' actions amounted to shocking and outrageous misconduct and because of that, the charges against Roman Seleznev should be dismissed.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Norman Barbosa disagreed. He said nothing presented during a two-day hearing supported Seleznev's claims that the agents were running amok in a foreign nation.

Barbosa says the agents worked with their counterparts in the Maldives and respected foreign authorities. They did not engage in any deceptive practices and the charges against Seleznev should remain intact.

U.S. District Judge Richard Jones said he would rule on the motion to dismiss on Tuesday afternoon.

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8:30 a.m.

Lawyers for a Russian man accused of hacking into U.S. businesses will urge a federal judge to dismiss the charges against him because they believe the arrest by U.S. agents violated Maldives law.

But federal prosecutors say agents acted within the law and the case against Roman Seleznev should go to trial.

Closing arguments in the motion-to-dismiss hearing are set for Tuesday. Three agents with the Secret Service and State Department testified that Maldives police took Seleznev into custody in 2014. They said federal agents only took over with permission from local authorities.

Seleznev's lawyers say the arrest violated the Maldives Constitution.

Federal prosecutors say Seleznev hacked into the computer systems of American restaurants and other businesses and stole about 2 million credit card numbers that he later sold on a private website

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Martha Bellisle

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