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Russian ambassador calls on NGOs to help US-jailed Russian citizen Seleznev

"Seleznev is a disabled victim of the 2011 terrorist attack in Morocco and has to take medication and remain under the care of physicians," Anatoly Antonov said

WASHINGTON, December 3. /TASS/. Russia’s Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov called upon major international human rights organizations, including Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, to pay attention to the plight of Russian citizen Roman Seleznev serving a lengthy prison sentence in the US.

"I would like to draw your attention to the grave situation with Russian citizen Roman Seleznev serving a long-term prison sentence in the United States," Antonov said in an open letter, published by the Russian embassy.

"Mr. Roman Seleznev was detained by the US authorities in 2014 in the Maldives. He was convicted to a severe sentence (27 years in prison). Humanitarian aspects of the case were not taken into consideration," the letter reads. "Mr. Seleznev is a disabled victim of the 2011 terrorist attack in Morocco and has to take medication and remain under the care of physicians. Instead, in prison he must comply with special safety requirements and appear at a security check-point every two hours from 6 a.m. through 8 p.m. This even prevents him from taking his meals normally or having rest. If he is not complying with such cruel requirements he is locked away at an isolation ward."

"Immediate steps to conduct medical examination of incarcerated and effective medical treatment are also required, as Mr.Seleznev suffers from hepatitis and epilepsy. Nevertheless, an MRT has never been taken," Antonov said.

"Your organizations are well-known for the noble mission to defend and preserve human rights. Therefore I would like to draw your special attention to the abovementioned case," he added. "I would be grateful if I can rely on your kind assistance in making this issue known to public. Each prisoner has a right for human treatment and conditions regardless of charges and their nationality."

Seleznev case

Seleznev was arrested by US intelligence officials on July 5, 2014, at the international airport of the Maldives’ capital, Male. That very same day he was sent to the Territory of Guam. Guam’s district court refused to release the Russian and ruled to deport him to Seattle.

In August 2016, the jury found Seleznev guilty of cybercrime. He was convicted of computer hacks that hit more than 200 US businesses over several years. On April 21, 2017 Seattle’s federal district court sentenced the Russian to 27 years of imprisonment and a penalty of $170 mln.

In December 2017, Seleznev was sentenced to another 14 years in prison "for his role in a $50 million cyberfraud ring and for defrauding banks of $9 million through a hacking scheme.".