Court Briefs


Alexandria man pleads guilty to exporting firearms and aggravated identity theft
Francis Fosuhene, 38, of Alexandria, pled guilty Friday to aggravated identity theft and exporting firearms without a license. Sentencing has been set for Aug. 22. Fosuhene faces a mandatory sentence of two years in federal prison for the aggravated identity theft conviction, and a maximum sentence of ten years in prison for the illegal exportation of firearms conviction.

In a statement of facts filed with his plea agreement, Fosuhene admitted to acquiring at least 23 firearms from September of 2005 to December of 2007. Fosuhene acquired some of the firearms by using the name and other personal identification information of Johnnie Fosuhene who also admitted to enlisting other persons to purchase firearms on his behalf, as well as shipping at least 22 of the firearms he acquired to Ghana without a license to export. Fosuhene took steps to conceal the guns in the shipments to Ghana by hiding them in or among other objects. Some of the firearms were re-sold in Ghana for a profit.

Corporation sentenced for export of sensitive electronic components
WaveLab, Inc., of Reston, Va, was sentenced today to one year of supervised probation and a $15,000 fine, together with $85,000 in forfeiture previously ordered, for the unlawful export of electronic components to the Peoples Republic of China.  The U.S. Department of Commerce, the Bureau of Industry and Security and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement tried the case in Alexandria.

The items were listed on the Commerce Control List for national security reasons because of their potential military uses. In a statement of facts filed with the plea agreement, WaveLab admitted that it had knowingly and willfully exported hundreds of power amplifiers that could be used in satellite communication of data, voice and video signals, as well as in wireless data communications. In addition to commercial uses, the power amplifiers had military applications and were therefore controlled for national security reasons for export to China. WaveLab admitted in its guilty plea that notwithstanding its knowledge of the licensing requirement, it failed to obtain a license for the export of more than 2,400 power amplifiers. The forfeiture of $85,000 represents an approximation of the profits obtained by WaveLab from the unlawful exports.

Judge asked to perform marriage ceremony before sentencing
As a twist in normal courtroom procedure, U.S. District Judge Gerald Bruce Lee was asked to perform a marriage ceremony between former State Department official Gons Gutierrez Nachman, 42, and his 21 year-old fianc before sentencing June 6.  Nachman is facing charges of child pornography. 

Amidst uproar from prosecutors and legal ethicists, Lee is considering the request if the couple obtains a marriage license, which Nachman and his fianc now have.  The couple would be hitched in the Alexandria federal courtroom in which Nachman pleaded guilty to having sexual relations with three underage girls while stationed overseas.

While posted abroad, Nachman, according to court records, had sexual affairs in government provided housing with a seventeen and fourteen year-old girl in the Congo and a sixteen year-old girl in Brazil.  He recorded his experiences in a dairy as well as on tape, according to court documents.  He is facing a nine to 11 year prison ruling and will be sentenced on July 11.  However, because of the gravity of his crime as well as his former position, Nachman will most likely face a lengthier time in jail, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney Ronald L. Walutes. 
If Lee does not agree to do the ceremony, Nachman requested that they be allowed to hold the wedding in the courtroom due to the rejection of the ceremony by the Alexandria Detention Center.

Alexandria man sentenced for illegal export of firearms parts to Sudan
Khalid Ahmed, 37, of Alexandria, was sentenced Friday to five months in federal prison, followed by five months in community confinement, a fine of $1,500 and three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to cooperate with immigration officials in any removal proceedings. Ahmed pled guilty on March 13 to unlawfully attempting to export firearms parts to Sudan in violation of federal law.

According to court documents, Ahmeds guilty plea stemmed from his attempt to export to Sudan components of an assault rifle without the requisite license issued by the U.S. Department of State. The parts were discovered on Aug. 22, 2007, at Dulles International Airport after having been packed by Ahmed in his wifes checked luggage prior to her leaving on a trip to her native Sudan. The seizure took place after ICE agents had previously intercepted a package of gun parts sent to Sudan in the mail by Ahmed, after which time ICE agents advised him about the licensing requirements for export, and U.S. sanctions against Sudan.

The investigation also revealed that Ahmed had purchased hundreds of export-controlled items, including tactical equipment, gun parts, and other items worth several thousand dollars, which had also been unlawfully exported to Sudan. ICE and U.S. Department of Commerce agents arrested Ahmed at his Alexandria residence on January 31. He is a native of Sudan and had applied for and received status in the United States as Legal Permanent Resident.

Police investigate Lorton homicide
A 23-year-old man was found dead in his driveway around 10 p.m. Saturday in the 8000 block of Paper Birch Drive. The victim, Faridullah Abbasi, had apparently come home, was confronted by someone and was subsequently shot in the upper body. Neighbors heard gunshots, saw the victim lying in his driveway and called police. The victim was flown to Inova Fairfax Hospital where he was later pronounced dead. An autopsy will be conducted this week. No suspect information has been released. This is the ninth homicide in Fairfax County in 2008.

Four million dollar verdict in favor of woman severely burned in surgical accident
An Alexandria City Circuit Court Jury returned a four million dollar verdict in favor of the plaintiff Rita Talbert, the victim of a horrific surgical fire, which occurred in April 2005. Due to the Statutory Cap in Virginia, Talbert is limited to a recovery of $1.75 million.  The jury found that the defendant surgeon, Deborah Hutchins, M.D., violated the standard of care by failing to take steps to prevent the surgical fire, which ravaged Talberts face, neck and chest during a procedure which was scheduled as outpatient surgery. Due to the extensive scarring, Talbert has endured over nine surgeries to correct the damage caused by the fire. Following the surgical fire, the defendant moved to Dubai, UAE, where she is now practicing.