Tuesday, December 13, 2016


Richard Ammar Chichakli, the Syrian-American CPA who worked closely with convicted arms trafficker, Viktor Bout, in a global operation that worked on both sides of the law, and who is presently serving time in a Federal Prison, for OFAC sanctions violations, may have abandoned his pending civil suit, filed against the US Attorney in Manhattan, and one of his assistants. The reason: Chichakli is scheduled for release on June 11, 2017, and regarding his need for the documents,  which we know that that a District Judge previously ordered them released to him, (notwithstanding that the defendants allegedly withheld them without cause), they will no longer be needed.

Chichakli asserted that his citizenship documents, and medical records, among other personal documents seized from his Texas residence years earlier, were needed, so that he could participate in certain US Bureau of Prisons programs, and for some unspecified medical reasons. He claimed that the Government had no need for them; the Government stated that it would retain them, until all of Chichakli's appellate remedies were exhausted.

Whether the Government acted in poorly towards the defendant is difficult to say; copies of the documents would have certainly been sufficient for the BOP, but the Government failed to deliver even copies to him. We do know that he continually complained about the conditions of his pretrial detention center confinement, when he was preparing his case, Pro Se, for trial. In any event, his suit is most likely barred by the Doctrine of Sovereign Immunity, but he filed it anyway, probably out of anger.

We also know that Chichakli, with Bout, participated in a number of operations, in support of the US military, often in Middle Eastern, or African, combat zones, and for that reason alone, he should have been granted some courtesy, but both he, and Bout, were not exactly treated well, while in custody. Whether there were political considerations at work here, or whether the American intelligence community had a hand in it, we cannot say, but he will be released to the community next year, and as a US citizen, he has the right to reside in America.

Given the swiftness with which civil cases are dismissed, in the Federal Courts, for lack of prosecution, when plaintiffs fail to move them forward, dismissal of the suit is expected shortly, unless he takes some affirmative action.

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