Jewish man among those arrested in missile smuggling plot
Three suspects, including a Jewish American, had their remand extended Wednesday after being arrested on suspicion of attempting to smuggle a lethal missile to Muslim groups operating inside the United States.
British weapons dealer Hemant Lakhani is suspected of heading the half a million dollar operation with two accomplices, Yehuda Avraham, a New York resident, and Moinuddeen Ahmed Hameed, of Malaysia, who helped launder the missile funds.
Secret services from the US, Russia and Britain cooperated in the operation, which began several months ago in St. Petersburg.
According to Tel Aviv based Ha'aretz, Yehuda Avraham received the payment for the first missile from Lakhani and transferred it to a bank account outside the United States, and Hameed was to launder the money.
The FBI's anti-terror team in New Jersey said Wednesday that the missile that was captured was the first of a larger deal, in which Lakhani was ready to provide 50 anti-aircraft SA-18 shoulder missiles.
Lakhani's contact, who presented himself as close to Sudanese underground organizations, was in fact an FBI
Avraham, 75, a diamond merchant, was arrested earlier this week by FBI agents in his Manhattan office. (Albawaba.com)
© 2003 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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