U.S. convicts Singapore man in Tamil Tigers arms plot
According to the US justice Department a federal jury in Baltimore has convicted the Singapore national Balraj Naidu aged 48 of conspiring to provide weapons to Tamil Tiger rebels operating in Sri Lanka.
Singaporian Naidu was charged in a conspiracy to provide material support to the
rebel group designated in 1997 by the U.S. Department of State as a
foreign terrorist organization. According to evidence Naidu and four co-conspirators arranged to buy
some 28 tons of U.S.-made weapons and ammunition from an undercover
business in Maryland.
LTTE representatives made a $250,000 down-payment on the $900,000
weapons deal with the bogus company in the summer of 2006.
Justice department arrested Naidu's partners in September 2006, after
inspecting the weapons that had been delivered to Guam and making
another payment of $450,000 to the undercover business.
U.S. officials told the courts that the group also had tried to buy
weapons from China, Thailand, North Korea, the Philippines and Indonesia
for the LTTE.
Naidu faces a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison.