updated 3/11/2008 10:36:51 AM ET 2008-03-11T14:36:51

A man accused of helping an alleged arms dealer try to sell millions of dollars of weapons to Colombian rebels was ordered held without bail on conspiracy charges.

Andrew Smulian did not enter a plea when he appeared in U.S. District Court in Manhattan after his arrest on Monday. He and Viktor Bout, a Russian arrested Thursday in Thailand, are charged with conspiring to deliver powerful weapons to Colombia's leftist rebel group, which is designated by the U.S. as a terrorist organization.

Smulian's lawyer, Mary Mulligan, declined to comment.

Bout, whose dealings reportedly inspired a 2005 movie about the illicit arms trade, was arrested at U.S. request in Bangkok after eluding arrest for years, authorities said.

Bout has long denied being involved in illicit deals and has never been prosecuted for arms selling despite investigations in several countries. He faces extradition to the U.S.

Armor-piercing rockets
Prosecutors allege the two men conspired to sell weapons that included 100 surface-to-air missiles and armor-piercing rockets to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), which Colombia's government has been fighting more than four decades.

Both men were charged with "conspiring to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization."

A criminal complaint said confidential sources directed by the Drug Enforcement Administration posed as members of the rebel group while negotiating to buy arms from Bout.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Discussion comments


Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments