New data may help review Viktor Bout’s case — defense team

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NEW YORK, February 8. /TASS/. The defense team of Russian citizen Viktor Bout, sentenced to 25 years in a US prison, is set to request new documents from US authorities, which may serve as a basis for his case review, attorney Alexei Tarasov told TASS.

Tarasov said that he planned to send a request to the US Department of Justice about details of a special operation to detain Bout, carried out by the department’s Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

According to him, during the 2007-2008 operation, “the money was paid to confidential informants, and those sums were huge.” The testimony received from those informants served as a basis for convicting Bout.

“By saying that, I mean hundreds of thousands, even, possibly, millions of dollars,” he said. “The thing is that the sums paid to confidential informants, voiced during the trial, were quite different. We would like to make sure that those sums were correct.”

“If we manage to obtain this piece of information, and if it contradicts the information presented to the defense during the trial, it can serve as a basis for cancelling the guilty verdict and the sentence,” Tarasov said. “A request of this kind was earlier sent by Bout himself, but most of it was not granted.”

The lawyer said that this time the defense team would seek to obtain this information in a court case.

Viktor Bout was apprehended in the Thai capital of Bangkok in 2008 on the basis of an arrest warrant issued by a local court at the request of the United States. He was charged with conspiracy to deliver weapons to a group calling itself the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), regarded as a terrorist organization by Washington. In 2010, Bout was extradited to the United States. In April 2012, he was sentenced to 25 years in prison and a fine of $15 mln.

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