Viktor Anatolyevich Bout (Russian: Виктор Анатольевич Бут) (born 13 January 1967, near Dushanbe, Tajik SSR, Soviet Union) is a convicted Russian arms smuggler of Ukrainian origins. A citizen of Russia, he was arrested in Thailand in 2008 before being extradited in 2010 to the United States to stand trial on terrorism charges after being accused of intending to smuggle arms to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) to use against U.S. forces. On 2 November 2011, he was convicted by a jury in a Manhattan federal court of conspiracy to kill U.S. citizens and officials, deliver anti-aircraft missiles and provide aid to a terrorist organization.
A former Soviet military translator, Bout had reportedly made a significant amount of money through his multiple air transport companies shipping cargo mostly in Africa and the Middle East during the 1990s and early 2000s. As willing to work for Charles Taylor in Liberia as he was for the United Nations in Sudan and the United States in Iraq, Bout may have facilitated huge arms shipments into various civil wars in Africa with his private air cargo fleets during the 1990s.
Bout says he has done little more than provide logistics, but former British Foreign Office minister Peter Hain called Bout a "sanctions buster" and described him as "the principal conduit for planes and supply routes that take arms ... from east Europe, principally Bulgaria, Moldova and Ukraine, to Liberia and Angola".
In cooperation with American authorities, Royal Thai Police arrested Bout in Bangkok, Thailand, in 2008. The United States demanded his extradition, which was eventually mandated by the Thai High Court in August 2010. Before his extradition to the United States in November 2010, he expressed confidence that this U.S. trial would eventually lead to his acquittal. This did not occur. From January 2011 to June 2012 Bout was incarcerated in the Metropolitan Correctional Center, New York City. In June of 2012 he was transferred to the United States Penitentiary, Marion in Illinois. On 5 April 2012, he was sentenced to 25 years imprisonment by a U.S. judge.
Read more about Viktor Bout: Personal History, Places of Residence, Alleged Russian Government and Intelligence Ties, Orders and Warrants Regarding Bout, Thai Arrest and Extradition, Prosecution and Conviction in The United States, In The Media
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