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WASHINGTON, March 16. /TASS/. The case of Russian national Viktor Bout, who is serving a 25-year prison term in the United States on arms smuggling charges, has been distributed among the members of the US Supreme Court for a conference on March 31.
"Distributed for Conference on March 31, 2017," the Court said.
According to Bout’s lawyer, Alexei Tarasov, the Supreme Court judges will decide whether they would review the merits of the case. Their verdict on that matter "is expected in early April," he told TASS, adding that the stage of conference is basically technical but "still important."
On February 23, the US Supreme Court registered a petition filed by Bout’s defense lawyers requesting to overturn an earlier verdict. A response to the petition is expected to come on March 27.
According to the petition, the court of appeals and a New York district court used wrong legal criteria while considering evidence that the New York attorney’s office had concealed exculpatory evidence from the defense, Tarasov said earlier.
Apart from that, he noted that the US Supreme Court accepts for consideration only a small percentage of cases that are referred to it.
Bout was detained in the Thai capital of Bangkok in 2008 on the basis of an arrest warrant issued by a local court at the United States’ request. He was charged with conspiracy to deliver weapons to a group calling itself the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, regarded as a terrorist organization in the United States. In 2010, Bout was extradited to the United States. In April 2012, he was sentenced to 25 years in prison and a fine of 15 million U.S. dollars.
Bout is serving the term in Marion prison, Chicago, Illinois, 500 kilometers south of Chicago.