Seven people, referred to by Police Corps president Jaroslav Spišiak as a ‘pensioners’ club’ in view of the age of their 71-year-old leader, have been charged with attempting to traffic in nuclear substances in both Slovakia and the Czech Republic, Slovak and Czech officials announced at a press conference on Thursday, December 15.
The police did not identify the nuclear material but said it was due to arrive from the former Soviet Union, without elaborating.
Slovak Police President Jaroslav Spisiak said that the materials had not entered the country, but that the gang members had taken photos of it and sent them out to prospective buyers in the hope of making a cool €500,000.
In a statement, the Slovak police said that the leader of the gang, which has been under surveillance since 2009 according to AP, was a 71-year-old Czech, whilst his Slovak accomplices were aged between 52 to 61. The suspects face up to 10 years in jail if found guilty of illegally trading in radioactive materials.
“They have been charged with the criminal acts of illegal production and possession of nuclear material, radioactive materials, highly dangerous chemical substances and biologically aggressive substances and toxins,” the statement reads
Spišiak said that the attempt was effectively thwarted because the suspects had been monitored by the Slovak police since February, after a tip-off from their Czech colleagues. “Initially, the trade was supposed to take place in the Czech Republic, where the first negotiations occurred,” said Roman Kafka from the Regional Prosecutor’s Office in Brno, as quoted by the TASR newswire. Spišiak refused to say what kind of nuclear substances were in the frame. He did state, however, that they originated from former republics of the Soviet Union.
Source: Sun Daily
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