DOSSIER

Roman Vega (Stepanenko)  

This page, along with the entire website, is maintained by Roman's friends.

Smoking is prohibited in all U.S. federal prisons 
since November, 2004
It isn't only the difficult terrain, the vipers and sandstorms and raiding parties. The journey itself is a kind of conscious Being, a living deity who does not wish to engage with the foolish or the weak, and hence will try to dissuade you. It insists on the furthest degree of respect.
– Thomas Pynchon


Currently Roman is in a "medium security" correctional facility FCI Williamsburg (South Carolina), where he was transferred in March 2016 after a year in McRae Correctional Institution (Georgia), and some time in USP Atlanta.

He could be contacted directly through snail mail at the address: Roman Vega, # 59198-004, FCI Williamsburg, P.O. Box 340, Salters, SC, USA

You may email him as well, although emails to Roman are going roundabout - via his friends. (More on that here.)

Some bio tidbits:

Roman is from Crimea, on the Black Sea. He received his degree in mathematics, from Simferopol State University. Was in Red Army and in private business worldwide. Professionally, he specializes in the area of secure communications, countersurveiilance and integrated security systems; organizing protective, intelligence, counterintelligence and anti-terrorist measures.

He is fond of mountain climbing, speleology, short-wave amateur radio communications, scuba diving, Tai chi, yoga, Tao, Zen.

Between 1989 and 2002 Roman lived and/or worked in Crimea, Moscow (and all around Russia), Ukraine, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iran, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, Republic of Georgia, Belarus, Romania, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Netherlands, Germany, India, Pakistan, Burma (Myanmar), Egypt, Libya, Seychelles, Maldives, U.S.A., Canada, Mexico, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria, North Korea, Turkey, Ireland, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Lichtenstein, Italy, Hungary, Grenada, Turks & Caicos, Montserrat, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucie, St. Martin, Antigua & Barbuda, Anguilla, Trinidad & Tobago, Curacao, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, St. Barts, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan, China, Spain, Japan, Moldova, Transnistria, Abkhazia, South Ossetia, Syriya and Malta.

Roman was arrested in Libya and Egypt in 1993 by counter-intelligence services of both countries, and in 1999 by the FBI - in Miami (that case was dismissed).

Interpol arrest warrant. 2004
His latest arrest was in Cyprus in February of 2003. After spending 18 months in prison there, Roman was extradited to the United States on an Interpol warrant in 2004.

When he refuse to cooperate with the U.S. Department of Justice (in exchange for the withdrawal of all charges, and immediate release), Washington was pushing for his conviction on multiple life senetnces (PSR level 52).

Thankfully for the efforts of his legal teams in San Francisco and New York, friends' assistance and Lady Luck, instead of lifelong incarceration Roman was "only" sentenced to 18 years in the U.S. federal prison system. This came about after 10 year-long investigation and preparation for trials in the federal district courts of California and New York.

Roman's current U.S. sentence began in 2004, but he has been in prison continuously since February of 2003:

  • 2003 - Nicosia Central Prison (Nicosia, Cyprus)
  • 2004 - Nicosia Central Prison (Nicosia, Cyprus)
  • 2004 - U.S. Marshals' transfer: Cyprus > Amsterdam > Minneapolis > San Francisco
  • 2004 - San Francisco county jail (San Francisco, California)
  • 2004 - Santa Rita county jail (Santa Rita, California)
  • 2004 - Alameda Glenn Dyer North county jail (Oakland, California)
  • 2005 - Alameda Glenn Dyer North county jail (Oakland, California)
  • 2005 - Federal Detention Center Dublin (Dublin, California)
  • 2006 - Federal Detention Center Dublin (Dublin, California)
  • 2007 - Federal Detention Center Dublin (Dublin, California)
  • 2007 - ConAir transfer: San Francisco > Phoenix > Oklahoma-city
  • 2007 - Federal Transfer Center Oklahoma (Oklahoma-city, Oklahoma)
  • 2007 - ConAir transfer: Oklahoma-city > Orlando > Miami > Atlanta
  • 2007 - United States Penitentiary Atlanta (Atlanta, Georgia)
  • 2007 - ConAir transfer: Atlanta > New York
  • 2007 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, East side (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2008 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, East side (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2009 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, East side (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2009 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, disciplinary segregation unit (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2010 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, East side (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2011 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, East side (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2011 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, disciplinary segregation unit (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2012 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, disciplinary segregation unit (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2012 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, West side (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2013 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, West side (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2014 - Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, West side (Brooklyn, New York)
  • 2014 - ConAir transfer: New York > Oklahoma-city
  • 2014 - Federal Transfer Center Oklahoma (Oklahoma-city, Oklahoma)
  • 2014 - ConAir transfer: Oklahoma-city > Salt Lake City > Las Vegas
  • 2014 - Nevada Sothern Detention Center (Pahrump, Nevada)
  • 2014 - ConAir transfer: Las Vegas > Oakland
  • 2014 - Alameda Glenn Dyer North county jail (Oakland, California)
  • 2014 - Federal Detention Center Dublin (Dublin, California)
  • 2014 - Federal Correctional Institution Mendota (Fresno, California)
  • 2014 - Federal Correctional Institution Lompoc (Santa Barbara, California)
  • 2014 - Federal Correctional Institution Lompoc, disciplinary segregation unit (Santa Barbara, California)
  • 2015 - Federal Correctional Institution Lompoc (Santa Barbara, California)
  • 2015 - United States Penitentiary Victorville (Mojave desert, California)
  • 2015 - ConAir transfer: Los Angeles > Oklahoma-city
  • 2015 - Federal Transfer Center Oklahoma (Oklahoma-city, Oklahoma)
  • 2015 - ConAir transfer: Oklahoma-city > Texas > Alabama > Georgia
  • 2015 - United States Penitentiary Atlanta (Atlanta, Georgia)
  • 2015 - Clayton County Prison (Clayton, Georgia)
  • 2015 - McRae Correctional Institution (McRae Helena, Georgia)
  • 2015 - McRae Correctional Institution, disciplinary segregation unit (McRae Helena, Georgia)
  • 2016 - McRae Correctional Institution, disciplinary segregation unit (McRae Helena, Georgia)
  • 2016 - United States Penitentiary Atlanta (Atlanta, Georgia)
  • 2017 - Federal Correctional Institution Williamsburg (Salters, South Carolina)
___

Roman wrote:

July 4, 2015

Was transferred from California (FCI Lompoc) through USP Victorville (near Los Angeles) and FTC Oklahoma-city to Georgia (CI McRae).

March 26, 2014

Since March 2014 at the prison FCI Lompoc.

December 2013

On December 12, 2013 I was sentenced to 18 years for the federal case in New York. I'm now waiting to be transferred back to West coast where I will close out the 2004 federal case in San Francisco, California which has remained dormant since 2007.

November 2012

As of November 2012 I am incarcerated in New York’s MDC (Metropolitan Detention Center) in Brooklyn. I was arrested almost 10 years ago and have still not been sentenced by the American court. I was last arrested in 2003 in Cyprus, as alleged to be Boa and charged (on the base of very flimsy and circumstantial evidence) of being one of the organizers and leaders of the criminal hacker-carder syndicate CarderPlanet and BoaFactory. A year and a half after the arrest, in 2004, I was extradited from Cyprus to the United States. My extradition documents were cooked by Cyprus police, based on the Interpol order initiated by the U.S. Government. 

The Interpol order was based on the arrest warrant issued by the Northern California Federal District Court. My California case (still unresolved & dormant) contains 40 charges that "weigh" 600 years in prison. I have seen the inside of several Californian jails while preparing for the jury trial. A plea bargain was reached between my lawyers, the Judge Breyer and the prosecutor in 2007. If I was to give up a jury trial and sign paperwork pleading guilty by association, without admitting that I am Boa (as they baselessly stated in the indictment and everywhere else), I would be set free, with time already served in detention.

Nobody – neither judges, government agents nor prosecutors like jury trial. This is extra work for them, leading to temporary breakdowns of their conveyor belt. This prosecutorial, industrial-scale conveyor belt is based upon an arrest, followed by any means possible to get the accused to plead guilty, after which he is sentenced and proceeds on to prison to serve out his time. As a result, the conveyor belt is freed to work on new quarry. 

Michelle Alexander in her The New York Times article "Go to Trial: Crash the Justice System" quotes Timothy Lynch, director of the criminal justice project at the libertarian Cato Institute: "The truth is that government officials have deliberately engineered the system to assure that the jury trial system established by the Constitution is seldom used." It was formally agreed between the parties that the United States nor any of its prosecutors and law-enforcement agencies would have any further claims against me. They would not prevent me from leaving this country. They would not bring new charges against me.

I have known for a long time that you cannot trust any state, and especially the United States. But I had some small hope. Ah, hope – the sanctuary of fools. The Russian writer Varlam Shalamov wrote well about this: "Hope is like shackles on the prisoner. Hope is never freedom. A man hoping for something changes his behavior, and prostitutes his soul more often than one who has no hope... One can only hope for a chance, one lucky chance. Patience and a break – this is what saved us and will save us in the future. Two whales on which rests the entire prison world." I was hoping they would let me go only so that they could track down where I'm going  as nothing was found by my accussers throughout their multi-year worldwide investigation efforts.

The bargain struck between the prosecution, the Judge and my lawyers gave me an airline ticket to fly from San Francisco to Miami, then to Grenada (Caribbean), into Quito (Ecuador) via Caracas (Venezuela). An agreement was reached that on August 28, 2007 I would be released from the San Francisco federal courtroom and the US Marshals would escort me to the airplane to make sure I left the country. Farewell, America?


Not so fast, though. The ending was more convoluted, nevertheless in the true "justice" spirit of this country. For transportation to court, prisoners are routinely waist-chained, handcuffed and shackled by the US Marshals. That day, on the way to court, being handcuffed, shackled and waist-chained, I was dropped on the concrete floor of Santa Rita county jail, head first. This was done in full view of other prisoners who thought I was done. The impact on my head hitting the concrete floor was so strong that blood rushed from my nose, ears, eyes, and mouth, and I lost my consciousness. 

Was this to soften me up or to cloud my thinking? Or was it done on instructions from someone – or better yet – for the excess love of democracy? When I came to my senses on the floor in the puddle of blood, remembering my boxing training, I got up on one knee, spitting out blood and pieces of broken teeth. They took off my handcuffs for a few minutes and dragged me to the water faucet. Then onward we went – to the forthcoming star-spangled manifestations of democracy, liberty and justice.

I must mention that since that day, for five years, I’ve been trying to get medical examination and an MRI. My requests and petitions (related to this and other matters) are routinely being ignored at all levels – from jail medics to federal judges.

In front of the Judge at the San Francisco federal courtroom on that August day in 2007, I was still jaggering from my joy ride. The Judge was ready to bid me farewell, and I was ready to take a trip to my beloved Ecuador. It was then that a couple of "men in black" from Washington DC stood up. They advised Judge Breyer that they don't care about any arrangements made prior; and that as of last night, I had a new indictment – based on the same unproven facts, but on the different statutes, in the Eastern Federal District of New York. This is where I was taken by ConAir few months later.

It’s the end of 2012 – and I have not been convicted on any charges by any United States court. I will soon be spending my tenth year in various jails and prisons here without being convicted. I deem myself a POW - prisoner of war, within the war which the United States' version of "justice" is in a battle against common justice, as it is understood by the rest of the world. Nothing that is happening to me is even remotely related to justice. It does not matter how my case is being manipulated and how judicially sophisticated the United States make it appear. Well, I love being cornered. Both the view as well as the mind are clearer when you are standing in a corner.

From November 2007, after a good dozen other jails and prisons, I am now in New York’s MDC Brooklyn, a transfer/pretrial jail that holds people while they are being investigated or those who are transferred through New York from one jail/prison to another. Currently I am awaiting a sentence on NY charges. My presentencing report (PSR), provided to the Judge by the probation office, humanely recommends the 52nd level of the sentencing guidelines. This is more than life. Life sentence is only 43rd level.

The prosecutors and "men in black" want the same. The more years the accused receives – the better for their careers and resumes. In their opinion I should get no less than 27.5 years. This is an exact amount of time promised to me unless I agreed to play their games and testify, under oath, against several well-known politicians from some of the former Soviet Union republics. Otherwise, I would have been freed many years ago, the same as a bunch of other personalities from CarderPlanet, ShadowCrew and its subsequently reincarnated groups & organizations. I met several of them in jails, and none of them received a sentence of more than 4 years.

My sentencing date has not been set. What sentence I shall receive and how things will progress remains to be seen. In the meantime, my lawyers are working on a sentencing memorandum.

Regardless of what I should receive, I will be transported back to San Francisco, where my prior case remains open. Such are the quirks of American "justice". This brings up a recently circulated jailhouse parable in which one unfortunate guy was standing for sentencing, and who may be Allen Stanford, who was earlier this year sentenced to 110 years:

Would you like to say something? – asks the Judge who just meted out the 110-year sentence to the accused.
Nothing to say, but I have a question. May I? ... Your Honor, I’m 60. You just gave me 110 years. You realize I will never live to be 170 years old. This means I will not be able to serve this sentence in its entirety.
Well, serve as much as you can, – boringly sighs the Judge.

Thus we are sitting in prisons, serving as much as we can.

Meanwhile on this thought a verse of Paavo Haavikko came to mind:

   "Take heart, Ovid. No sentence
            is longer than life."


November 2012
MDC Brooklyn, New York 

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