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Bout Calls on Russia to Sue U.S., Thailand in International Court

RIA Novosti

17:57 12/04/2012

MOSCOW, April 12 (RIA Novosti) - Convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, who has been sentenced to 25 years in a U.S. jail, called on Russia on Thursday to file a lawsuit against the United States and Thailand to the International Court of Justice.

“I would like to use this opportunity to ask State Duma lawmakers to push for Russia to file a lawsuit to the International Court against the United States and Thailand over what has happened to me,” Bout said, speaking from his cell during a video link between Washington and Moscow.

Last week, a U.S. court sentenced Bout to 25 years in jail for conspiring to kill U.S. citizens and sell arms to Colombian militants. He maintains his innocence.

Bout called for a special commission to be set up at the State Duma to “establish facts and the truth” about his arrest in Thailand in March 2006 as a result of a sting operation in which U.S. informants posed as Colombian rebels, his subsequent extradition to the United States and his trial.

Bout’s wife Alla said during the video link that “four petitions addressed to [Russian Foreign Minister Sergei] Lavrov have been filed to the Russian Foreign Ministry” on her husband’s behalf concerning the hoped-for appeal to the International Court of Justice.

She said, however, she was not sure about the outcome of their initiative “because there has been no such precedent” in Russian history.

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