FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT:
October 24, 2005
3:15 p.m. (EDT)
Eastern District of Washington – Spokane
Contact – U.S. Marshal Michael L. Kline or
Chief Deputy M. Eric Marks (509) 353-2782
USMS Headquarters Public Affairs (202) 307-9065

 
Irish Police Arrest U.S. Marshals’ 15 MOST WANTED
Fugitive Sought for Vehicular Homicide in Washington State

Frederick David RussellDetectives of the Irish national police, known as An Garda Siochana, acting on information from the United States Marshals, captured international fugitive Frederick David Russell at a Dublin clothing shop yesterday, October 23, at 5:00 p.m. Russell, who initially gave police an alias name, was working as a security guard at the retail store, and had been living with his girlfriend in nearby Cellbridge.

“Frederick Russell was the first drunk driver ever to be placed on our 15 MOST WANTED fugitive list,” says U.S. Marshals Acting Director John Clark. “We took up the case because of the tragic nature of the car crash and the number of deaths charged to this fugitive. Russell’s flight from justice after he failed to appear for court,” added Clark, “became a matter of immense concern to citizens throughout the Northwest.”

On the night of June 4, 2001, near Pullman, Washington, several students from nearby Washington State University were returning to campus by car after seeing a movie. Suddenly, a vehicle allegedly driven by Russell, 26, illegally pulled into their lane causing the crash that killed three students and permanently injured two others.

Russell suffered only minor injuries and was charged with drunk driving, three counts of vehicular homicide, and four counts of vehicular assault. He was released on bail to the custody of his father, an attorney and then-head of the Washington State University’s Criminal Justice Program. However, Russell fled the state.

Initially, a friend transported him to Alberta, Canada, and Russell may have traveled between British Columbia, the Yukon Territory and Alaska. He eluded capture by state and local law enforcement agencies on several occasions. Earlier this year, they asked U.S. Marshals to place his name on the famed 15 MOST WANTED list. U.S. Marshal Michael L. Kline, Eastern District of Washington, said that a tipster in Dublin saw Russell on the Marshals web site. Deputies here verified the tip. “The period leading up to this arrest was nerve wracking,” said Kline. “We knew that one leak could have caused Russell to flee and disappear again.”

“International arrests of this type require close contact and coordination by law enforcement,” said Robert J. Finan II, Assistant Director of the Marshals’ Investigative Services Division. “Agencies involved in this capture included Irish Garda, Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs, State Department’s Regional Security Officer in Ireland, and our Deputies.”

While Russell was being pursued in the U.S. and Canada, he allegedly was linked to known drug smugglers marketing a high-grade marijuana grown in British Columbia tagged “B.C. Bud.”

“Deputy Marshals in this District were committed to finding Russell not only to see that justice was served, but to give some closure to families that lost sons and daughters in this tragic accident,” said Marshal Kline.

Russell currently is in the custody of Irish authorities and is scheduled to face extradition and bail hearings later this week.

U.S. Marshals are the nation’s primary fugitive hunting organization and capture more federal fugitives each year than all other national law enforcement agencies combined. The Marshals “Wanted Poster” for Russell can be obtained at: http://www.usdoj.gov/marshals/investigations/most_wanted/russell.pdf.