Powerful American Military Equipment Caught en Route to Russia

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A high-precision grinding machine system manufactured in Connecticut that is banned from being exported to Russia due to its potential application in nuclear proliferation and defense programs has been intercepted in Latvia before it was to be shipped to Russia.

A superseding indictment charging a number of individuals and European companies was unsealed in the District of Connecticut, naming Eriks Mamonovs, 33, Vadims Ananics, 46, and Janis Uzbalis, 46, who were arrested Tuesday in Riga, Latvia, while Ukrainian Stanislav Romanyuk, 37, was arrested in Tallinn, Estonia, on June 13. The indictment alleges they conspired to violate U.S. export laws and regulations to smuggle a jig grinder to Russia. The machinery “can be used for nefarious purposes, including in defense applications to build weapons of war,” said Matthew Millhollin, special agent in charge of homeland security investigations in New England. All are currently detained and the United States is seeking their extradition. “The power and precision of American technology must not be put to use by the Kremlin’s war machine,” said Andrew Adams, director of task force KleptoCapture. The indictment is just one of two after an entire network was busted providing military technology to Russia, some of which has ended up in the battlefields of Ukraine. Read more at U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Connecticut.


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