Russian Arms Dealer to be Sentenced

Posted April 5th, 2012 at 2:20 pm (UTC-5)
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Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout is to appear in a New York court Thursday to learn how long he will spend in prison on terrorism charges.

Bout's sentence could be anywhere from 25 years to life for his November 2011 conviction for trying to sell arms to Colombian rebels to use against Americans.

Bout's lawyer says his client is not guilty and accuses the U.S. government of entrapment.

U.S. agents posing as Colombian rebels arrested Bout in Thailand in 2008 after arranging a deal to buy weapons from him. Two years later, he was extradited to the United States for trial, and was found guilty in November 2011.

Bout, now 45, says he was merely trying to sell cargo planes, not weapons, to the undercover U.S. agents.

Bout's long history of international arms sales has earned him the nickname “Merchant of Death” and inspired a 2005 U.S. movie called “Lord of War.”