Originally posted by Hellmutt
reply to post by Ownification
Viktor Bout is probably the biggest "non-state" weapons dealer. Not only AK47s for armies of i.e. child soldiers in Africa and Afghanistan, but also advanced anti-aircraft systems, and even tanks and helicopters. A gigantic amount of weapons. And not only the weapons, but he's also able to deliver anywhere in the world. An all-in-one service. He made wars possible. Nuclear or radioactive materials too? That would be speculation, but it wouldn't surprise me. He had access to everything, and there are lots of potentional buyers. If you've seen the interview with Alexander Lebed on 60 Minutes, you could hear Lebed say that there might be more than 100 suitcase nukes missing from Tiraspol. Where are they now? Viktor Bout's language skills, contact network, fleet of planes and other resources, made him number one in the business. Not many other arms dealers can compete with that (anyone at all?). Btw, these weapons didn't just come from Soviet stockpiles, but also as brand new sophisticated weapons from factories in different countries. I bet those who control these factories make a lot of money too. It will be hard for them to replace a guy like VB.
'Merchant of Death' claims lack of evidence
March 17, 2009
The alleged gunrunner Viktor Bout has been back in court in Thailand for an extradition hearing.
Charles Taylor, the former president of Liberia, took the stand in his own defense at The Hague on Tuesday and immediately denied a catalog of horrifying charges based on testimony by prosecution witnesses telling stories of violence, rape, amputation and even cannibalism.
The defense lawyer began: “Mr. Witness, can I ask you, can you read and write English?” Mr. Mansary listened to the translation, and then he held up his two stumps. “I have no hands to write anything,” he said.
BANGKOK, July 24 (RIA Novosti) - The Thai authorities have promised to handle the extradition case of arms dealer Viktor Bout objectively and without politicizing the situation, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Friday.
A US request to extradite the notorious arms dealer Viktor Bout to face terrorism charges was rejected by a Thai court today.
The US said it was "disappointed and mystified" by today's ruling. It has 72 hours to appeal against the ruling, during which time Bout will remain in detention. If the US does not appeal, he will be set free.
Today, a Thai court ruled against extraditing notorious Russian weapons trafficker Viktor Bout to the United States — a setback for the American legal system and a bad portent not just for U.S.-Thai relations, but also for relations between the United States and Russia.
Rep. Ed Royce, a California Republican who has led the congressional effort to hold Bout accountable for his actions, stated: “If this ruling holds, this [U.S.-Thai] relationship will be set back dramatically.”
“While the Thai Foreign Ministry has stated that the extradition request meets the conditions of the Thai-American extradition treaty, the Russian government has been pushing hard for Bout’s release,” Royce continued. “Politics seems to have trumped the law. Something is rotten in Bangkok.”
Something is rotten indeed.
He is accused of supplying weapons to just about every military conflict in the world since the 1980s, from Columbia to Iraq.
With accusations of this scale, Bout would have faced a life in prison, had he been tried in the US.
A Thai court stunned American officials here on Tuesday by rejecting the extradition of Viktor Bout, a Russian businessman who is accused of global arms trafficking.
In rejecting the extradition request, the court said the case of Viktor Bout was politically motivated. U.S. authorities have 72 hours to decide whether to appeal. In the absence of an appeal, Bout will walk out of jail a free man.
Thai prosecutors announced Thursday that they plan to challenge a lower court ruling that rejected a U.S. request to extradite suspected Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.
That means Bout, 42, dubbed the “Merchant of Death” for allegedly shipping arms that have fueled conflicts in Africa, the Middle East and Latin America, will spend several more months in a Thai jail pending the appeal. He had hoped for release as early as Friday.
“The prosecutor has filed its intention to appeal the case as requested by the U.S. officials,” said Sirisak Tiyatan, the director general of the attorney general’s foreign division. The appeal must be filed within 30 days.
Bout’s lawyer Lak Nitiwatanavichan said he was confident the rejection would be upheld on appeal and his client eventually freed.
"According to new information, six people died. Two citizens of Congo, who were escorting the cargo, and the crew of four - two Ukrainians and two Moldovans," Sokolov said.
An Aero-Fret Business Antonov AN-12 freighter, registration TN-AIA performing a freight flight from Pointe Noire to Brazzaville (Congo) with 5 crew and 1 passenger on board, was on approach to Brazzaville, when the airplane impacted ground about 8nm (15km) southwest of Brazzaville within the cemetery of the village of Nganga Lingolo slightly right of the extended centerline ahead of Brazzaville's runway 05 at around 7am local (06:00Z). All 6 people on board perished in the crash.
The scientists appeared concerned about sophisticated weapons allegedly mentioned by Mr. Bout, and their possible availability on the international blackmarket.
The U.S. government continued their attempts to extradite accused arms dealer Viktor Bout from Thailand today. U.S. Deputy Attorney General David Ogden told the Thai government that trying Bout in American courts is "a matter of great importance to the United States."
the Federation of American Scientists (FAS), a Washington-based group founded in 1945 by scientists who developed the world's first atomic bombs.
October 21, 2009
US President Barack Obama on his Asia trip next month will press Thailand to extradite Viktor Bout, the alleged Russian arms dealer nicknamed the "Merchant of Death," a US official said Wednesday.
Kurt Campbell, the assistant US secretary of state for East Asia, said that US officials including Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have raised the case in every meeting with Thailand.
"We are pressing it as hard as we possibly can," Campbell testified before the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
"If he gets out, it's going to be bloody carnage somewhere in the world," Royce said
Oct. 29, 2009
Arm-twisting by the United States to convince Thailand to extradite a Russian arms dealer is "unacceptable," the Foreign Ministry said Thursday.
Ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said that some Thai and foreign media outlets recently published reports that the United States was pressuring the Thai executive and judicial bodies in an attempt to extradite Bout, currently in prison in Thailand.
"We [Russia] consider such acts, which are of an illegal nature, unacceptable and incompatible with a fair trial for Bout," Nesterenko said