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5 Jan, 2019 01:41

Russian arrested by FBI for exporting rifle scopes & ammo primers to Russia – court documents

Russian arrested by FBI for exporting rifle scopes & ammo primers to Russia – court documents

A 39-year-old Russian citizen has been arrested in Saipan for attempting to export military-grade equipment, such as night-vision rifle scopes and ammunition primers, to Russia without obtaining a proper permit.

Dmitrii Makarenko was arrested by an FBI agent on Saturday, December 29 in the Northern Mariana Islands, a US territory in the northwestern Pacific Ocean. The Russian national was taken into custody on an indictment filed in the Southern District of Florida Court back in June 2017.

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The indictment alleges that Makarenko, reportedly a resident of the Russian Far East city of Vladivostok, and his 'co-conspirator' Vladimir Nevidomy, a resident of Florida, acted in concert to transfer military-grade equipment to Russia between April and November 2013.

Overall, Makarenko has been indicted on eight counts and is facing 45 years behind bars if found guilty.  

He would allegedly order various items from Nevidomy, the owner of Florida-based Primex Group Inc., by email, with the correspondence cited in the court filings. After receiving an order, Nevidomy would procure the equipment from vendors in the US and send it to Makarenko, who paid for the items with transfers from accounts in Latvia and China.

While the equipment he ordered was military-grade, the scale of the purchases was not. He allegedly acquired three night-vision rifle scopes and a thermal monocular over the course of three months, all covered by the United States Munitions List.

An attempt by Nevidomy to ship 1,000 ammunition primers to Vladivostok, Russia in October 2013 failed, however, after US Customs and Border Protection agents seized the package in November, triggering an investigation into a potential illegal export scheme.

The indictment alleges the clandestine scheme was devised to circumvent the Arms Export Control Act and the International Traffic in Arms Regulations for the purpose of personal enrichment. Apart from charges linked to illegal export, Makarenko is has also been indicted on two counts of money laundering.

Nevidomy pleaded guilty to the charges last June and is now serving a 26-month sentence. Makarenko first appeared before court on Monday and is set to be transported to Florida for further legal proceedings, as requested by Assistant US Attorney Garth Backe.

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