Authorities make arrest in Libya nuclear probe

1st July 2005, Comments 0 comments

1 July 2005, MANNHEIM, GERMANY - Federal investigators in Germany on Friday issued an arrest warrant against a Swiss national as part of a continuing investigation into smuggling of nuclear technology to Libya. The suspect, identified only as a 61-year-old Swiss businessman, was extradited from Switzerland to Germany on Thursday, authorities said. He was the second Swiss businessman to be arrested in connection with the probe. Last year a 39-year-old Swiss national was arrested in Germany accused of helpin

1 July 2005

MANNHEIM, GERMANY - Federal investigators in Germany on Friday issued an arrest warrant against a Swiss national as part of a continuing investigation into smuggling of nuclear technology to Libya.

The suspect, identified only as a 61-year-old Swiss businessman, was extradited from Switzerland to Germany on Thursday, authorities said.

He was the second Swiss businessman to be arrested in connection with the probe. Last year a 39-year-old Swiss national was arrested in Germany accused of helping Libya's nuclear programme.

Prosecutors allege both men helped Libya develop and build gas ultra-centrifuges used for the enrichment of uranium and the production of nuclear weapons.

Investigators say the suspect was part of an international illegal supply network supplying centrifuge technology and operating mainly out of Dubai.

Federal investigators in Karlsruhe believe a Sri Lankan national, Buhary Seyed Abu Tabir, acted as middleman between the supply network and the country of purchase.

The accused received from Tabir the task of supervising the production of more than 2,000 centrifugal parts at a Malaysian firm and of instructing Libyan personnel in their use.

The parts were shipped to Dubai, reloaded onto a German freighter under a false declaration and sent on their way to Libya.

However the ship was stopped at the port of Taranto in Italy in October last year and the freight was seized on the orders of German authorities.

Prosecutors said the arrests are in connection with their investigations of others, including a 65-year-old German national living in South Africa, in connection with illegal supplies to Libya.

Libya stopped its gas ultra-centrifuge programme in December 2003. In March it signed an additional protocol to the nuclear Non- Proliferation Treaty allowing inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency to carry out snap checks on all its nuclear facilities.

DPA

Subject: German news

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