Russian arrested in Italy for violating U.S. worldwide sanctions

Discussion in 'Law & Justice' started by kazenatsu, Apr 15, 2023.

  1. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    This is another example of how the U.S. is applying its laws across the world, imposing its legal jurisdiction in other countries.

    Artyom Uss is the 40-year-old son of a Russian regional governor. Criminal charges were issued against him by U.S. prosecutors accusing him of facilitating the buying of technology information from U.S. companies to provide to Russia, a country that the U.S. is currently involved in a proxy war with in Ukraine (although not officially at war).
    He is also accused of facilitating the shipping of oil from Venezuela to Russia and China, in defiance of sanctions imposed by the U.S.

    Artyom Uss visited Italy, and there was arrested by Italian authorities based on a warrant from the U.S. against him. This despite the fact that he had not committed the alleged crime while in the U.S. It's not even entirely clear that he has ever visited the U.S.

    The U.S. is enforcing its laws against other people in other parts of the world.

    The purchase of the technology from those U.S. companies would not have been illegal except for the fact that the information was going to be given to Russia.
    (Artyom Uss allegedly used his organization to buy the technology through companies set up in third party countries, where it was legal for U.S. companies to sell technology to)

    I think this sets some concerning legal precedents.

    The criminal laws under which he was charged were "violating sanctions" (against Venezuela) and "defrauding banks" (under the legal theory that sending money to companies through a bank in the U.S. constitutes "fraud", since it is against the law for U.S. companies to take part in transactions that violate U.S. sanctions).

    Artyom Uss did however escape from house arrest and fled Italy right after the Italian court made the decision to have him extradited to the U.S. The Italian Justice minister is probing how this happened, and investigating whether or how information about the court decision was leaked to the suspect.

    It seems the war in the Ukraine has spilled over into the legal arena. The U.S. is waging a worldwide legal war, threatening individuals in other countries with prison.


    related thread: Arrest of Huawei financial officer demonstrates U.S. willingness to impose its laws abroad
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2023
  2. Imnotreallyhere

    Imnotreallyhere Well-Known Member Donor

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    Do you really not understand extradition? No one has time to explain it to you. Read up on it, it's pretty interesting.
     
  3. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    I don't think you understand what the issue is.

    Let's say you went on a vacation somewhere, maybe to Mexico. Mexico arrests and sends you against your will to China, at the request of China. You have never been to China before, but the Chinese are saying you violated one of their laws.
    Let's say you own a business and in the past you did business with one country that China does not like. China passed a law against doing business with that country.
    But everything you did was completely legal in the country where you live and the country you did business with.
     
  4. Melb_muser

    Melb_muser Well-Known Member Donor

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    Italy and US have extradition treaties. Don't break international law = don't get arrested.
     
  5. Melb_muser

    Melb_muser Well-Known Member Donor

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    The relationship between china and mexico does not compare with the relationship between the us and Italy. *Gong*
     
  6. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    You seem to completely miss the point.

    Perhaps you just don't have a problem with this because the U.S. is the one setting the rules?

    It's not "international law". It was U.S. law.
    This man was not a U.S. citizen and the law was not broken while he was in the U.S. (nor did it involve trade with the U.S.)

    Have you kept up to date with all Russian and Chinese laws? You have only yourself to blame if you break any of them.
    Doesn't matter if you never go to Russia or China. Your fault.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2023
  7. Melb_muser

    Melb_muser Well-Known Member Donor

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    In a general sense you might be right. It might not be fair. But at the end of the day you need to choose a side. It seems that the Right often favours Russia.
    In this specific instance I don't see how Artyom Uss could not know that he was "doing something naughty".

     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2023
  8. Imnotreallyhere

    Imnotreallyhere Well-Known Member Donor

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    He committed a crime against the US regarding the smuggling of US tech. Where do you suppose he got the stuff?
     
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  9. Imnotreallyhere

    Imnotreallyhere Well-Known Member Donor

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    Let me put it to you this way:Osama bin Laden was not in the US on 9/11/01 and hadn't been for 22 years. Are you trying to suggest he didn't commit any crime in relation to the WTC, the Pentagon or the plane that went down in PA? I think you're mistaken there.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2023
  10. Imnotreallyhere

    Imnotreallyhere Well-Known Member Donor

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  11. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    That is different, for two reasons. First, a crime was actually committed against people in the U.S. And second, it was a really terrible crime, murder, murder of a huge number of civilians. I think there is a commonly accepted world standard that murder is wrong. (And in any case the Bush Administration at the time considered Osama's group to be at war with the U.S., only further justifying military action) When one country starts arresting other people for more questionable "crimes" that not everyone believes is wrong, you start quickly entering a slippery slope.
    Trying to compare this to that, well, that's like comparing apples to oranges.

    So the combination of those two factors makes the difference.

    Now, if the U.S. were officially at war with a country, and someone was shipping that country military weapons, I could perhaps see a reason why the U.S. might carry out legal or military action against other people around the world, especially if it was an evil country and it was an especially just war, or it was a big all-out war.

    But what this man did, it is not considered a crime by Russia, it is not considered a crime by China, and in fact it was not considered a crime by most countries of the world. I don't even think it was a crime in Italy, the country that arrested him.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2023
  12. cristiansoldier

    cristiansoldier Well-Known Member

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    Doesn't this simply come down to the type of treaties with have with other countries.

    As you mentioned a few years ago a Chinese executive from Huawei was detained for years in Canada fighting an extradition to the US for crimes of fraud in order to circumvent US sanctions against Iran.

    We also extradite criminals from Mexico that commit crimes against the US. It is a long process but the treaties provide a means. I think there is a drug cartel criminal that was recently arrested in Mexico awaiting extradition.

    Here is another story of a Sinaloa cartel member successfully extradited from Mexico to the US.

    https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/high...-mexico-united-states-face-international-drug

    Here is an article I found regarding extraterritorial jurisdiction.

    https://www.fmamlaw.com/blog/2017/08/when-can-the-us-government-prosecute-someone-for-acts-abroad/
     
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  13. LiveUninhibited

    LiveUninhibited Well-Known Member

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    I think the issue is that most of the world recognizes Russia as committing war crimes and the existence of sanctions is not something somebody needs to read the laws to be aware of. Basically, it's like somebody funding terrorism. Many countries are willing to allow such persons to be prosecuted for violating international law. I mean, this is kind of the very nature of sanctions. This is one way sanctions are enforced. If they weren't enforced, they truly would be meaningless.
     
  14. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    It's one thing when you are talking about an actual Islamic-style terrorist group, of the type that specifically targets innocent civilians in other countries. You could then stretch that logic and try to apply it to a country like Afghanistan, Iran, North Korea, and you will start entering into some grey zone territory. But it's really going to be a huge stretch of that logic if you want to start applying that same logic to other countries which are an enemy of the U.S.

    You talk about "war crimes", but many people and several other countries accused the U.S. of doing the same sort of thing. As I said, you're really entering into a "grey zone" that is likely to have a lot of double standards.

    You keep talking about "international law". But there really is no set "international law". We can talk about international standards that are nearly absolute, yes those do exist, but it's not absolutely totally and completely clear Russia has violated those. I mean not in the same type of way with other examples you are trying to compare this to.

    This Russian did not violate any "laws" passed by the U.N. The E.U. does have some sanctions against Russia, but the strictest part of those sanctions did not kick in until February 2023 (after this man was alleged to have committed the "crime"), and furthermore the country of Italy does not seem to be in favor of those sanctions.
    I suppose I am not really a legal expert to be able to say how much national soveriegnty Italy actually signed away in being a part of the E.U., how much legal basis there actually is for this to be considered a crime in Italy. But I think it is very telling that this Russian was extradited to the U.S. If it had been a crime in Italy, or even just the E.U., why was there a need to extradite him to the U.S.? Why not prosecute him in Italy?

    If you are saying that, I get the feeling you might have bought too much into the propaganda. It's not so "obvious" that Russia is "totally evil". The countries of China and India do not take the same sort of view. Brazil currently does not have sanctions on Russia.

    (Sure, you can make the argument that what Russia is doing is evil, but that's very different from the much more totally obvious evil of an Islamic terrorist group, for example. It's a big logical fallacy to view them as equivalent)

    I want you to think what type of precedent this is going to set. Are other countries, which the U.S. is currently enemies with, going to start arresting anyone in the world who trades with the U.S?
    Just stop for a moment and think how absurd and ridiculous this logic is, if taken to its logical conclusion.
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2023
  15. Imnotreallyhere

    Imnotreallyhere Well-Known Member Donor

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    The Russian did indeed commit a crime against the US. It was also a crime where he was arrested. It is disingenuous to claim it was not a crime in his home country.

    Sanctions are being enforced by Italy. A simple google would have found that fact.
     
  16. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    So you see absolutely nothing wrong with this? No way this type of concept could be problematic?

    Did it ever occur to you that citizens in the U.S. might be committing "crimes" against, say Russia, even though those citizens have never been to Russia, and were never involved with any trade to Russia?

    I think to understand the actual issue here, we need to focus on the word "against", and look at its meaning.
    This is not a crime "against" a country in the normal and conventional meaning of the word.

    The U.S. is pretty much asserting that it has jurisdiction over the rest of the world. And anyone who steps foot in the U.S. or any of the other countries allied with it could be held accountable to those laws, even if the crime was committed while they were not in those countries where the acts were illegal.

    The crime was not even "directly" against the U.S. either. I mean it's not like this guy tried to scam people in the U.S. out of money or conduct illegal trade with the people in the U.S.

    This entire issue has to do with control and rights.
    The U.S. is saying it has the right to make it a crime for people to do things in other parts of the world. That sanctions can be enforced against everyone in the world, not only on U.S. citizens and people in the U.S.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2023
  17. Jack Hays

    Jack Hays Well-Known Member Donor

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    This is a perfectly normal, routine action.
     
  18. Jack Hays

    Jack Hays Well-Known Member Donor

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  19. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    It's possible other nations, who are enemies of the United States, might try to arrest U.S. citizens for violating their laws. Meaning you not only have to follow your own country's laws, but also may be obligated to follow the laws of other countries, even if you never entered those country's territory.
    This might make people afraid to conduct trade between two countries if there is another country in the world that has deemed it illegal.

    For example, let's say you see the news, and you donate a large amount of money to a Ukrainian charity organization, not thinking you are doing anything wrong. Let's say 5 years later you go on a vacation to Mongolia. While there, the Mongolian authorities arrest you and hand you over to Russia, where you are prosecuted for violating Russian law. It was illegal under Russian law for you to send money to that Ukrainian charity, even though you are not a Russian citizen and were not in Russia at the time.

    Or you might be hired by a company in your country to help facilitate trade between the Philippines and Taiwan. What you're doing is completely legal in your country, the Philippines and Taiwan. But let's say China has put in place sanctions against trade with those countries (due to political conflict).
    A few years later, you travel to Vietnam on a business trip and the Vietnamese authorities arrest you and hand you over to China. You might never have visited China before, doesn't matter.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2023
  20. Jack Hays

    Jack Hays Well-Known Member Donor

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    Please see the link in #18.
     
  21. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Your link is about extraterritorial jurisdiction when it comes to sexual exploitation of children (and not only that but the wording of that law only applies to U.S. citizens and permanent U.S. residents).

    I think this is an example of a slippery slope.

    Sure, we're willing to have one law concerning one type of issue because it mostly sounds justified. But the next thing we know, there is another law passed relying on the precedent the previous law set. And this second law is not so obviously justifiable as the previous one.

    I think controversial concepts like extraterritorial legal jurisdiction should only be applied in the most extreme cases and with the most extreme clearly wrong crimes.
     
  22. Jack Hays

    Jack Hays Well-Known Member Donor

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    It's not controversial.
    18 U.S. Code § 3042 - Extraterritorial jurisdiction
    upload_2023-5-14_20-17-6.png
    Cornell University
    https://www.law.cornell.edu › ... › CHAPTER 203


    Section 3041 of this title shall apply in any country where the United States exercises extraterritorial jurisdiction for the arrest and removal therefrom ...
     
  23. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    What does that mean?
    I was not aware there were any specific countries where the U.S. "exercises extraterritorial jurisdiction".

    Commonly, a country's legal jurisdiction applies only to its own territory, and the waters a certain distance from its land territory. In the case of time of war, a country can also claim the extension of its jurisdiction into another country.
    In some cases countries claim a certain degree of jurisdiction over their own citizens, wherever in the world they might be.
    These are all the more "normal" cases. But what we're talking about in this story and this phenomena go beyond that.
     
  24. Jack Hays

    Jack Hays Well-Known Member Donor

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    That is false. By treaty extraterritorial jurisdiction is common.
     
  25. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    It's unclear if that is what the law was referring to.
    The law may also be a little vague, because it says it supposedly applies to those countries, but does not say that it doesn't apply to other countries.
    And keep in mind that law only applies to U.S. permanent residents and citizens. So that alone is already very specific. For example, that law would not apply to Italian citizens in Italy, even though the U.S. may have an extradition treaty with Italy.

    I hope that's not too confusing to sort out and understand.
    To try to use this as some sort of "precedent" that the U.S. has authority over any foreign citizens in a country the U.S. has an extradition agreement with, as you seem to be trying to do, is disingenuous.
     

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