Washington looks forward to seeing alleged Russian arms dealer in U.S. court

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Washington is looking forward to seeing Russian businessman Viktor Bout in a U.S. court as soon as he is extradited from Thailand.

Washington is looking forward to seeing Russian businessman Viktor Bout in a U.S. court as soon as he is extradited from Thailand, the U.S. Department of State said.

Thai English-language daily The Nation reported on Tuesday that Bout, suspected by Washington of arms trafficking, will be extradited on Wednesday.

"As you know, the extradition has been approved by the Thai judiciary. His extradition to the United States is pending. We look forward to seeing him in a U.S. court," Philip Crowley, the department's assistant secretary, told a daily press briefing.

Crowley, however, refused to comment on how Bout will be extradited and when he is expected to be in the United States.

"I think for security reasons, we are not going to discuss the logistics of how and when he travels from Thailand to the United States. You will know when Viktor Bout has arrived in the United States; he'll appear in a U.S. court and then will answer charges against him," he said.

Former Russian army officer Viktor Bout, 44, was arrested in March 2008 on a request from the United States, which accuses him of illegally trading arms. He has denied the accusations.

Last Friday, the Thai appeals court ruled to extradite the Russian to the United States.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called the Thai court's decision politically motivated, suggesting it was made to appease Washington. He also said Moscow would seek Bout's repatriation.

 

WASHINGTON, August 25 (RIA Novosti)

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