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Japanese Gang Leader’s Shocking Attempt to Sell Nuclear Material

via CBC News
This article was originally published at StateOfUnion.org. Publications approved for syndication have permission to republish this article, such as Microsoft News, Yahoo News, Newsbreak, UltimateNewswire and others. To learn more about syndication opportunities, visit About Us.

The US DOJ unsealed a superseding indictment charging a Japanese national, Takeshi Ebisawa, with attempting to sell nuclear materials, including weapons-grade plutonium, to Iran and purchase large quantities of weapons for an armed insurgent group in Burma.

Ebisawa and co-defendant Somphop Singhasiri previously faced narcotics and firearms charges and now face additional life sentences.

Ebisawa told a DEA undercover agent he had access to nuclear materials and sent photos of samples measuring radiation, agreeing to broker a sale to an Iranian general posing buyer.

Assistant Attorney General Matthew G. Olsen of the Justice Department’s National Security Division, said, “The defendant stands accused of conspiring to sell weapons grade nuclear material and lethal narcotics from Burma, and to purchase military weaponry on behalf of an armed insurgent group.”

“It is chilling to imagine the consequences had these efforts succeeded and the Justice Department will hold accountable those who traffic in these materials and threaten U.S. national security and international stability,” he continued.

According to the indictment, “With the assistance of Thai authorities, the Nuclear Samples were seized and subsequently transferred to the custody of U.S. law enforcement authorities.”

“A U.S. nuclear forensic laboratory examined the Nuclear Samples and determined that both samples contain detectable quantities of uranium, thorium and plutonium. In particular, the laboratory determined that the isotope composition of the plutonium found in the Nuclear Samples is weapons-grade, meaning that the plutonium, if produced in sufficient quantities, would be suitable for use in a nuclear weapon,” the filing continued.

Testing found the plutonium isotopes were weapons-grade. Ebisawa also sent the agent a list of thousands of AK-47s, M-16s, machine guns, mortars, and missiles he sought to purchase.

The indictment aims to hold accountable those threatening US security by trafficking such dangerous materials and weapons.

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