Russia on Tuesday called the U.S. government's arrest of an alleged hacker "kidnapping" and said it was considering the move "the latest unfriendly action by Washington."
The suspect, Roman Valerevich Seleznev, who the U.S. Secret Service said it arrested in the Pacific island nation of the Maldives on Friday and brought to the U.S. territory of Guam to face justice as "one of the world's most prolific traffickers of stolen financial information," is reportedly the 30-year-old son of a Russian federal lawmaker.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the arrest is "not the first time that the U.S. government, ignoring a bilateral agreement on mutual legal cooperation regarding criminal issues, has conducted a literal kidnapping of a Russian citizen."
Lawmaker Valery Seleznev, who represents the nationalist LDPR party in Russia's federal parliament, told state news agency RIA Novosti on Tuesday that his son, who he is sure did not have a U.S. visa, could likely have been "kidnapped" and taken to the U.S.
U.S. officials accuse Roman Seleznev of participating in a crime ring that sold more than 100,000 credit card numbers obtained from American stores' computers, generating a copious profit for the group and causing over a million dollars in damages.
U.S.-Russian relations are at a low point after the U.S. backed the deposition of Ukraine's pro-Russian president in February and Russia annexed the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea a month later.