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North Korea Crypto Defendant Griffith To Challenge SDNY Venue After Sealed Subpoena

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Guardian UK - Honduras - The Source

SDNY COURTHOUSE, May 18 –  Virgil Griffith, charged with violating North Korea sanctions in connection with a crypto-currency conference there, will now seek to get the case moved for lack of venue out of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.   

This emerged at a telephone conference in the case on May 18. Griffith's defense lawyer Brian E. Klein said he is ready to file a motion on venue as early as this Friday May 22, based on "ex parte, in camera" filings he made with SDNY Judge P. Kevin Castel. 

   Inner City Press, which has covered the case from Griffith's first appearance in the SDNY Magistrates Court to his Christmas holiday legal moves to get released to home confinement in Alabama, will be seeking the still-sealed documents in this criminal case. The docket says that on May 7, "Sealed document placed in vault."

    It appears that the U.S. Attorney's office told Klein in a May 15 phone call that its basis for SDNY venue was an email Griffith sent to the North Korean diplomatic mission in New York, which Inner City Press has also visited.

     Klein's recitation of the May 15 call, confirmed by Assistant US Attorney Kyle A. Wirshba, was preceded by Klein seeking ex parte - that is, under seal - a subpoena, to which a response has been made. 

  Judge Castel set the deadline for the venue motion for May 27, with opposition June 10 and reply June 17. The next conference in the case is set for July 23. Inner City Press has will have more than - or, we hope, before.

The case is US v. Griffith, 20-cr-15 (Castel). 


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