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Armenian businessmen wanted for smuggling arms into Karabakh

18 June 2021 13:19 (UTC+04:00)
Armenian businessmen wanted for smuggling arms into Karabakh

By Vafa Ismayilova

Azerbaijan has put on the international wanted list the heads of Armenian companies illegally transporting weapons to Karabakh in the past 20 years, the Prosecutor-General's Office reported on June 18.

On April 28, 2021, the Prosecutor-General's Office opened a criminal case under the relevant articles of the Criminal Code, and the Prosecutor-General's Office investigation department was instructed to investigate the case, the report added.

It noted that the investigation had been carried out on the basis of information published in a number of media outlets and social networking platforms about the illegal transportation of weapons and military equipment to Armenia and from there to Azerbaijan's Nagorno-Karabakh region.

It was established that the head of the Tashir group of companies, Samvel Karapetyan, also known in Armenia as a "grey businessman" and Royalsys Engineering owner David Galustyan, KOMEX Director-General Ara Abrahamyan and others smuggled illegally-acquired large-calibre military firearms, ammunition, explosives and devices into Armenia and from there into Azerbaijan's Armenian-occupied Nagorno-Karabakh region and adjacent seven districts during 2001-2021, the report added.

In violation of the requirements of the Customs Convention on International Carriage of Goods and the Treaty on the Limitation of Conventional Arms in Europe, the people in question organized the smuggling by passenger planes, the Armenian Air Force's Il-76 TD cargo plane and the Ilyushin-76TD cargo plane purchased by Ara Abrahamyan, who also heads the Union of Armenians of Russia.

The smuggled weapons, ammunition, explosives ad military equipment were aimed for the Armenian armed forces, the Prosecutor-General's Office said.

"Samvel Karapetyan, David Galustyan and Ara Abrahamyan were prosecuted under Articles 100.1, 218.1, 228.3, 279.1 and 206.4 of the Criminal Code, a measure of restraint in the form of arrest was chosen against them, and all of them were put on the international wanted list," the law-enforcement agency added.

The Prosecutor-General's Office sent a request for legal assistance to the relevant state authorities of foreign countries in connection with the aforementioned criminal case.

It stated that all possible measures are being taken to bring to justice those responsible for these and other similar crimes in accordance with international law.

The Prosecutor-General's Office earlier stated that under President Ilham Aliyev's instructions those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity will be identified and brought to justice regardless of the time of the crime.


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