US Navy Officer Ridge Alkonis Transferred to Federal Prison
US Navy officer Ridge Alkonis Transferred, formerly incarcerated in Japan due to negligent driving resulting in fatalities, has been relocated to a federal prison in Los Angeles upon his return to the United States, confirmed by a family representative and the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP).
The BOP spokesperson verified Alkonis’ placement at the Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC) in Los Angeles, stating, “Ridge Alkonis is now in custody.” However, concerns persist regarding his family’s visitation rights, with approval estimated to take up to 90 days, prompting calls for his immediate release.
Ridge Alkonis’ Incarceration in Los Angeles
Jonathan Franks, a family spokesperson, expressed dismay, asserting, “It is outrageous he is spending the night in jail.” Despite the family’s distress, the BOP declined to provide details on visitation timelines.
Family’s Plea for Ridge Alkonis’ Release
Amidst the wait, the Alkonis family finds solace in his return to the US after 507 days. While hopeful for his reunion with family, uncertainties loom over the procedural timeline, delaying their celebration.
US Officials Confirm Alkonis’ Custody in the US
Vice President Kamala Harris and National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan intervened, facilitating Alkonis’ repatriation via an international prisoner convention. On return, Alkonis faces assessment by the US Parole Commission for potential further confinement.
US Parole Commission Review and Future Confinement
The Department of Justice estimates a lengthy parole commission process, considering Alkonis’ Japanese sentence, with potential home custody as an outcome.
Biden Administration’s Involvement in Parole Proceedings
The Biden administration’s readiness to assist the Parole Commission in understanding the case nuances, including diplomatic complexities and Alkonis’ military record, remains contingent on the Commission’s discretion.
Family’s Assertions and Legal Actions
Alkonis’ family persists in asserting his illness as the cause, not negligence, emphasizing their offered restitution to the victims’ families as per Japanese customs.
Efforts for Transfer Back to the US
Highlighting alleged violations of the US-Japan forces agreement, the family advocated for Alkonis‘ transfer under the COE Convention, a process known to be protracted.
Political Intervention and Pleas
Political intervention from US senators urged Japan to reconsider Alkonis’s case, citing overlooked circumstances and a Navy investigation supporting Alkonis’s medical condition.
Hope for a Timely Resolution
Acknowledging US Governmental efforts, the family anticipates a prompt review of Alkonis’ case by the Department of Justice for his swift release, yearning for a reunion during the holiday season.
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