Can No1Marauder explain why the court(s) ruled against Brendt Christiansen's defense?
I'll let China Daily:
The judge also rejected a defense motion to make the death penalty unconstitutional, as well as a request to dismiss federal charges due to lack of jurisdiction.
"Both automobiles and cell phones qualify as instrumentalities of interstate commerce," he wrote, and therefore qualify the case for federal jurisdiction, even if they're only used within one state, adding that whether those items were used to commit the alleged crime is a matter for trial.
Under such a theory pretty much any item used in a kidnapping that results in death would qualify the case for Federal jurisdiction. I disagree that Congress ever intended such a result and/or that it would be Constitutional if they did so and expect it will be litigated on appeal assuming Christiansen is convicted.
The applicable statute is this:
(a) Whoever unlawfully seizes, confines, inveigles, decoys, kidnaps, abducts, or carries away and holds for ransom or reward or otherwise any person, except in the case of a minor by the parent thereof, when—
(1) the person is willfully transported in interstate or foreign commerce, regardless of whether the person was alive when transported across a State boundary, or the offender travels in interstate or foreign commerce or uses the mail or any means, facility, or instrumentality of interstate or foreign commerce in committing or in furtherance of the commission of the offense