Ahead of Viktor Bout being sentenced to 25 years behind bars, RT’s Anastasia Churkina looks at the legal aspects and meaning of the case of the alleged arms dealer, extradited from Thailand to stand trial in the U.S.
Back in November 2011, a Russian Businessman by the name of Viktor Bout, was convicted in a Federal Court in New York of conspiring to sell surface-to-air missiles and providing materialistic support to members of the Columbian Rebel Group known as the FARC. But as it was revealed during the trial, Bout never met with members of the FARC.
In fact he met with undercover DEA informants, part of an elaborate sting operation to bring Bout to the United States. During the trial, the US Government claimed that Mr. Bout believed that the FARC wanted weapons to kill American Nationals in Columbia, and that Bout intended to provide them. Bout was arrested in Thailand back in 2008, and was extradited to the United States two year later. To this day, Bout, who is 45-years-old, continues to claim that he is innocent, and says he fell victim to propaganda and falsified information, much of which was derived through fictitious publications, such as Douglas Farah’s “Merchant of Death” and the Hollywood Blockbuster “Lord of War,” starring Nicholas Cage, which by many is considered to be based on the life of Viktor Bout. As Bout awaits his sentencing, he is detained at the Metropolitan Detention Center in New York, from where he spoke exclusively to The Voice of Russia Radio via telephone before his sentencing.
Viktor Bout was sentenced to 25 years in jail by a US judge.
During the sentencing, the ex-Soviet officer shouted “It’s a lie” as the prosecution said he had agreed to sell weapons to kill Americans.