MOSCOW — Family members of a Russian man charged with hacking in the United States insist he is innocent and fear he will die in custody if he doesn’t have his medication.
Roman Seleznev, son of a prominent Russian lawmaker, was arrested on bank fraud and other charges this week. U.S. authorities allege he hacked into computers at hundreds of businesses including the Phoenix Zoo.
Seleznev’s father, Valery, told reporters at a televised news conference Friday that his son, who was left brain-damaged after a 2011 bombing in Marrakech, will die without his medicine.
The son appeared in court Monday on the Pacific island of Guam and was ordered detained until a hearing July 22. He was arrested by the U.S. Secret Service over the weekend, according to documents in federal court in Seattle.
“There are no medical services there at all, treatment is not available,” Seleznev said. “He will die.”
Don Hall, a U.S. Marshals Service spokesman in Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands, said Guam authorities have staff to handle medical issues.
“The U.S. Marshals Service is adamant about ensuring that detainees receive all necessary medical care and prescribed medication,” Hall said.
Guam, an unincorporated U.S. territory with a population of 161,000, has a public hospital, several public health clinics and a naval hospital. Detainees usually receive medical attention at the naval hospital, Police Chief Fred Bordallo said.
Roman Seleznev was being held in a federal facility at Agana Lockup, Guam Dept. of Corrections Officer Joe Saloma said Saturday.
Prosecutors in Guam moved this week to have Seleznev transferred to Washington state, but a judge has not issued a ruling. Assistant U.S. Attorney Todd Greenberg in Seattle said Seleznev would not be brought to Seattle until after the July 22 hearing.
Seleznev, known by his nickname of “Track2,” is accused of carrying out a scheme to hack into retailers’ computers, install malicious software and steal credit card numbers from 2009 to 2011.
He is accused of marketing and selling those credit card numbers on “criminally inspired websites” and using servers in the U.S., Russia, Ukraine and elsewhere.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has accused Washington of kidnapping Seleznev. U.S. officials have declined to say how or where he was apprehended.
Seleznev’s girlfriend, Anna Otisko, said she was with him when he was grabbed by unknown men at Maldives Airport and put on the plane. Otisko said he was never wealthy and the vacation in the Maldives was a luxury for them.