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'Merchant of Death' arrested in Thailand

The arms dealer that is thought to have supplied Al Qaeda and current African civil wars with ammunitions was arrested in Bangkok on Thursday, reported the New York Times.

U.S. D.E.A. agents concluded a years-long investigation that spanned the globe on with Victor Bout's arrest. Agents posed as FARC rebels looking to buy weapons in order to secure enough information for Bout's arrest.

Bout, 41, is a Russian arms dealer who formerly served in the Soviet Air Force. His notorious reputation is based on United Nations intelligence citing him as the leader of the largest arms-smuggling operations in the world.

"Today’s arrest marks the culmination of a long term D.E.A. undercover investigation that spanned the globe," Michael J. Garcia, the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York said. "It marks the end of the reign of one of the world’s most wanted arms traffickers."

The BBC reported Thursday that Bout was dubbed the "merchant of death" for allegedly supplying warring parties in Angola and Sierra Leone, and is believed to have inspired Nicolas Cage's character in the 2005 film Lord of War.


What is "Farc"?