News / Europe

Alleged Russian Arms Smuggler's Wife Calls US Extradition Illegal

Alla Bout, wife of suspected Russian arms smuggler Viktor Bout, reacts during a press conference at Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand in Bangkok, Thailand, 22 Nov.  2010
Alla Bout, wife of suspected Russian arms smuggler Viktor Bout, reacts during a press conference at Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand in Bangkok, Thailand, 22 Nov. 2010


Daniel Schearf

The wife of alleged Russian arms smuggler Viktor Bout says Thailand acted illegally in extraditing him to the United States and vows to launch a legal battle against Thai authorities.

Bout is alleged to be one of the world's most notorious arms smugglers and is accused of fueling conflicts in Africa, the Middle East, and South America.

He faces charges in a U.S. federal court of conspiring to kill Americans and supporting a terrorist organization, which he denies.

Thai authorities turned him over to U.S. officials after more than two-years of legal battles that raised tensions between Moscow and Washington.

His wife, Alla Bout says his extradition was illegal because there was still a case against him pending in court here.

She says transferring her husband to the United States before the end of legal procedures breaches legal and humanitarian norms. She says by doing this the government of Thailand has once again demonstrated its complete subservience to Washington and willingness to fulfill any order from their American bosses.

Alla Bout says she plans to file a legal case to force the Thai government to bring her husband back to Thailand to release him.

She also seeks a visa to the U.S. where she says she will do all she can to defend her husband.

Russia also calls the extradition illegal and Thailand did it under intense pressure from Washington.

Thai authorities say they complied with Thailand's international legal obligations.

Viktor Bout was arrested in Bangkok in 2008 for allegedly offering to sell weapons of war to American undercover agents posing as members of the FARC, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.

Washington considers the FARC, an armed rebel group fighting against the Colombian government, a terrorist organization.

Alla Bout says her husband is the victim of a smear campaign by what she calls "unscrupulous United Nations experts", U.S. officials, and the media.

Some regional political analysts say Viktor Bout, an air force pilot during Soviet times, was close to Russian intelligence and may have information Washington wants.

Alla Bout says Russian diplomats told her U.S. officials offered her husband, herself, and their children political asylum in exchange for information on international arms trafficking.

But, she was told her husband refused, saying he was innocent and that he would fight the charges in court.

You May Like

Hong Kong Democracy Calls Spread to Macau

Macau and Hong Kong are China’s two 'special administrative regions' which gives them a measure of autonomy More

After Nearly 2 Years, Pistorius Remains Elusive

Reporter Anita Powell reflects on her experience covering the Olympic athlete's murder trial More

Kenyan Coastal Town Struggles With Deadly June Attacks

Three months after al-Shabab militants allegedly attacked their town, some Mpeketoni residents are still bitter, question who was really behind the assaults More

This forum has been closed.
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Obama to Ramp Up Anti-Ebola Efforts in Africai
Luis Ramirez
September 15, 2014 11:01 PM
President Barack Obama on Tuesday will unveil his plan to ramp up efforts against the spread of the Ebola virus in Africa. VOA White House Correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.

Video Obama to Ramp Up Anti-Ebola Efforts in Africa

President Barack Obama on Tuesday will unveil his plan to ramp up efforts against the spread of the Ebola virus in Africa. VOA White House Correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.

Video West Trades Accusations Over Ransoms

As world leaders try to forge a common response to the threat posed by Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, there is simmering tension over differing policies on paying ransoms. In the past month, the jihadist group has beheaded two Americans and one Briton. Both countries refuse to pay ransom money. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London, there is uncertainty in the approach of some other European nations.

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.

Video Washington DC Mural Artists Help Beautify City

Like many cities, Washington has a graffiti problem. Buildings and homes, especially in low-income neighborhoods, are often targets of illegal artwork. But as we hear from VOA’s Julie Taboh, officials in the nation's capital have come up with an innovative program that uses the talents of local artists to beautify the city.

Video US Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State

Leaders of America's Muslim community are condemning the violent extremism of the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. Muslim leaders say militants are exploiting their faith in a failed effort to justify violent extremism. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.

Video Americans' Reaction Mixed on Obama Strategy for Islamic State Militants

President Barack Obama’s televised speech on how the United States plans to “degrade and destroy” the group known as the Islamic State reached a prime-time audience of millions. And it came as Americans appear more willing to embrace a bolder, tougher approach to foreign policy. VOA producer Katherine Gypson and reporter Jeff Seldin have this report from Washington.

Video Authorities Allege LA Fashion Industry-Cartel Ties

U.S. officials say they have broken up crime rings that funneled tens of millions of dollars from Mexican drug cartels through fashion businesses in Los Angeles. Mike O'Sullivan reports that authorities announced nine arrests, as 1,000 law enforcement agents fanned out through the city on Wednesday.

Video Bedouin Woman Runs Successful Business in Palestinian City

A Bedouin woman is breaking social taboos by running a successful vacation resort in the Palestinian town of Jericho. Bedouins are a sub-group of Arabs known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Zlatica Hoke says the resort in the West Bank's Jordan Valley is a model of success for women in the region.

Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More