Topic: Viktor Bout case
Defense lawyers for jailed Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout claim there is new evidence to support their appeal for the case to be reconsidered.© AFP 2013/ Shirley Shepard
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Defense lawyers for jailed Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout claim there is new evidence to support their appeal for the case to be reconsidered.
"We have reliable information that representatives of American state agencies exerted pressure, intimidation, and bribery regarding Thai officials who took the decision to extradite Bout to the United States, and that on the basis of these new facts the case should be returned to Judge Scheindlin and canceled," Bout's attorney Albert Dayan told RIA Novosti.
Bout was arrested in Bangkok in 2008, but only extradited to the US in November 2010 after a protracted legal battle against it finally failed when the Thai cabinet backed the US request to send him to America.
Bout's defense has repeatedly claimed that this extradition was illegal, with Judge Sheindlin taking the position that it was not her job to evaluate other countries' laws. This time Dayan is claiming that American officials broke American law.
Dayan visited Bout in prison this week, and noted that he is no longer able to finance his defense.
A former Soviet military officer, Viktor Bout was convicted in November 2011 of conspiracy to kill US nationals, including military officers and employees, conspiring to supply man portable anti-aircraft missiles, and selling millions of dollars worth of weapons to the Colombian rebel group FARC.
He has continually denied the charges against him. In April 2012 he was sentenced to 25 years behind bars.
Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has reiterated the view that Bout's prosecution was political in nature, and said Russia will do anything it legally can to get him sent home.
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- Michael JohnathenHmmm13:09, 12/10/2012I don't believe hes guilty, but lets say he is; Why is there no trial in the US being held against the CIA and Members of government that sent AA Weapons(among others) to Pakistan to be transited to Afghanistan?
What exactly did he do thats any different? They said he sold weapons to people who would harm or already have harmed americans according to this article "FARC"; how would this harm americans in Colombia? Oh thats right it may harm our CIA drug trafficking planes that picking up coke to be dropped off onto our streets.
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The current contract portfolio of Russian arms exporters is worth about $46 billion. Annual exports total $15 billion, and this will ensure uninterrupted deliveries for the next three years, even in the worst-case scenario. The list of the main buyers of Russian weapons is unlikely to change drastically.