RT.com on May 13, 2012 released the following:
“Convicted arms trafficker Victor Bout told RT in an exclusive interview his case is purely political. Bout says his false conviction exposes America’s justice system as one of a police state on the brink of dictatorship.
Bout, who continues to maintain his innocence, is serving 25 years for conspiring to kill US citizens and sell arms to Colombian militants.
This week, it was decided that Bout will be sent from a New York prison to a super-maximum security prison, despite his trial judge recommending medium-security confinement.
The Colorado prison is known as the ‘Alcatraz of the Rockies’, and houses America’s most-dangerous and violent criminals. Bout’s lawyer is fighting to overturn the decision.
RT: You are sentenced to a quarter of a century behind bars. What does it feel like?
Viktor Bout: They can put physically your body in jail but they cannot jail your spirit. If your spirit is free and you understand what freedom is – it is impossible to break you down to your knees. I know I did not commit anything to get that punishment. Whatever they allege me as crimes – these crimes would never exist, unless the US government would invent that crime.
They labeled that conspiracy with “kill Americans” which works like a magic bullet for the jury here. The trial was very similar to medieval witch-hunt trials of inquisition when you must confess that you did bad things.
I understand the reality. I try to bring the message to my friends and my family, to the Russian people: listen, what is happening to me is a pure political case.
RT: You’re in a process of appeal and you’ve also asked Russia’s State Duma to file a complaint against the US and Thailand. What are you hoping for legally and politically?
VB: Legally the lawyers would know better the precedent of American law and what my perspectives are and what they are going to do. But I have almost no hope because this system works so that once you’re put under judicial decisions – no judge, even the Supreme Court, would ever cancel that. Because this is a “truth in Über state”. Nobody can ever reconsider that decision. [In the US] it is accepted that juries cannot fail.
RT: We know you’re about to be transferred to prison in Colorado. Considering your family and lawyer are in New York, will this affect you a lot, this transfer?
VB: They are trying to put me in the most notorious underground jail in the mountains hidden underground so I could never see daylight again as a punishment. For them this is a chance to create more obstacles to a proper appeal.
RT: You said in court to the jury and DEA agents: “God knows the truth, you know the truth.” What is your message to the US officials today, maybe the US president?
VB: I have a message to the US president: “If you keep using those thugs named DEA agents who invent crimes, this would not help America to really solve the problem of drug wars. But instead of going to the real problem they would just create crimes because there is no danger for them to go to those who do not hide, provoke them, do their dirty tricks and frame people up instead of solving real problems with real drug traffickers.
RT: It has been reported you knew you were dealing with undercover agents, not FARC members, at the time of your arrest. Is this the case?
VB: I was not sure who they are. For me they were very strange people and by their posing I understood right away they have nothing to do with FARC at all.
RT: You were dubbed the ‘Merchant of Death’ – do you think this nickname affected your case more than it should have?
VB: Of course. This is what the entire story is about. First you create a myth, then you bring in people who already saw the movie… My company was doing transportation, but that was legitimate contracts with legitimate governments with all the formalities done properly.
RT: Why do you think they went after you?
VB: For them it does not matter whom they are going to pick up. The mass media is spoon-feeding the American population so they do not care whom they pick up.
RT: You’ve seen the movie about yourself with Nicolas Cage playing you. What do you think about his performance?
VB: I feel sorry for him because it is a very mediocre movie. I do not even think it is interesting to watch or that it is a fair representation of the problems of Africa.
RT: If you knew you’d be serving 25 years behind bars, would you act differently?
VB: I do not regret nothing in my life and I can face anything I did because I didn’t do anything wrong in my life.
RT: If you were a free man right now, do you know what you would be doing? Would you start something new?
VB: Of course. I’m already locked-up for four years behind bars by Uncle Sam. My life is ruined completely. I don’t have any money left at all. They have not only closed my company, but put executive orders claiming $3 billion from me.
I’m asking a challenging president of the US: show the proof that I ever owned those billions! At least I know where to get money for my defense team.
If you repeat something a thousand times – it becomes the truth. This is the recipe used by the US administration, just like they did with weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
RT: Critics of your case have been saying it is anti-Russian. Is it the case?
VB: Of course it is anti-Russian. Look at what happened in Thailand during the extradition procedure. The criminal court of Bangkok denied the extradition. They applied tremendous pressure on the government of Thailand and actually bought me out, not extradited. We submitted an appeal to the Thai court and it is still not finished. The pressure was so huge they had to pass me to the American side. My case is still on the shelves in Thailand.
If there is a political will of the Thai government and they want to prove they have real, not mock, justice, and that they are not a colony of the US – they have to do a decision on my case.
RT: Will there be more ‘manufactured crimes’ when foreigners are brought unlawfully to American soil?
VB: The FBI and the DEA are manufacturing crimes regularly. I closely monitor such cases… This is how they fight their war on terror, because terror is not a state or a person.
RT: You said you’ll be able to return home earlier than your term is over. How is that?
VB: My case is purely political. Despite the American procedures the Russian public knows the truth.
My case shows the real condition of the American justice system of a police state close to dictatorship.”
Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys Videos:
To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Criminal Defense Daily.
Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.
The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or at one of the offices listed above.