Russia Ready for Dialogue on Bout’s Return

Moscow is ready to discuss with Washington the possibility of having convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout serve out his 25-year sentence in Russia rather than in the U.S., Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said on Friday.

“We are ready for dialogue with the United States to find solutions for the return of Viktor Bout using international legal mechanisms,” he said.

Lukashevich added that Russia is seriously concerned over U.S. plans to transfer Bout to the so-called supermax prison in Colorado, where convicted terrorists and other dangerous criminals are serving their sentences, often in solitary confinement.

“We expect a fair and impartial consideration (in the U.S.) of the application by Victor Bout’s defense team concerning the conditions of his imprisonment and the appeal against the sentencing,” the spokesman said.

Bout was sentenced to 25 years in prison for conspiracy to sell weapons to Colombian rebels. He maintains his innocence.


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