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Thais Reject US Request To Extradite Arms Smuggler

Raw : A Thai court Tuesday rejected a U.S. request to extradite an alleged Russian arms smuggler dubbed the “Merchant of Death,” dealing a setback to American efforts to try him on charges of plotting to supply weapons to Colombian rebels.

Viktor Bout, 42, was arrested in March 2008 at a luxury hotel in Bangkok as part of an elaborate sting in which U.S. agents posed as arms buyers for the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, which Washington classifies as a terrorist organization. He is being held in a Bangkok prison, but could be set free if no appeal is filed.

“We will not extradite him to the United States,” said Judge Chittakorn Pattanasiri, of the Bangkok Criminal Court.

Chittakorn said the court rejected the extradition request because Bout had not been accused of committing any crimes against Thailand, which has not listed FARC as a terrorist group.

Added: Aug-11-2009 Occurred On: Aug-11-2009
By: barnesy
Tags: Thais, reject, US, request, to, extradite, arms, smuggler
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