Russian Politician Wants Maldives Punished for Son's 'Kidnapping'
Lawmaker Valery Seleznev, who represents the nationalist LDPR party in Russia's federal parliament, said his son may have been "kidnapped" and taken to the U.S.
A Russian lawmaker whose son was arrested by U.S. officials in the Maldives has called for the island nation to face punishment for its involvement in his "kidnapping."
"First and foremost, there should be economic sanctions. Then an appeal to their conscience, like the fact that they contributed to the meaningless kidnapping of a man on their territory," Valery Seleznev, a member of Russia's federal parliament, said Tuesday in comments carried by state news agency RIA Novosti.
His son, 30-year-old Roman Seleznev, was detained Friday by members of the U.S. Secret Service on the accusation that he was a member of a cyber-hacking gang that caused more than $1 million in damages by selling credit-card data between October 2009 and February 2011.
According to the elder Seleznev, the U.S. agents could not have conducted the arrest without the "direct involvement" of the Maldivian authorities.
"The Maldivian authorities were present, and moreover they should have issued a court order. As it was, there was no permission granted by a court, they just handed over a person located on their territory to three American citizens," Seleznov was quoted as saying.
The lawmaker, who believes his son is being held in the U.S. territory of Guam, said that he was making plans to get his son back, but that they did not involve him traveling to the pacific island.
"Given the fact that he is likely being held on a military base in Guam, it makes no difference if I fly there or not — I don't have a permit. And to climb the walls would be pointless," he said.
The younger Seleznev, who was indicted on charges including identity theft and bank fraud, faces up to 30 years in prison.