Ukrainian Investigation Into Alleged Missile Exports Has Resulted in Indictments, Arrests, Official Says

A Ukrainian investigation into allegations that nuclear-capable cruise missiles were exported to China and Iran has so far resulted in the secret indictment or arrest of at least six people, a high-ranking intelligence official said Friday (see GSN, Feb. 4).

Three suspects were arrested and three were indicted last year, according to the intelligence official. Some of the six were identified in a letter sent by lawmaker Grigory Omelchenko to Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko calling for a full investigation, the Associated Press reported.

Among those named in Omelchenko’s letter was Russian national Oleg Orlov and a Ukrainian partner identified as E.V. Shilenko. The two have been accused of illicitly exporting 20 Kh-55 cruise missiles with the Russian state-owned arms export firm Rosoboronexport and a firm called Progress, which is a subsidiary of the Ukrainian arms export company Ukrspetseksport, AP reported. 

Both Orlov and Shilenko were indicted in abstenia last year and Orlov was detained last summer in the Czech Republic, according to the intelligence official. Ukraine is seeking Orlov’s extradition for possible prosecution, AP reported. Shilenko, though, remains at large, Omelchenko said.

The Ukrainian State Security Service is also investigating a Cyprus-based Russian national identified as G.K. Shkinov, who also remains at large, Omelchenko wrote in his letter. He added that three Ukrainians were detained last year in connection with the alleged transfers (Aleksandar Vasovic, Associated Press/The Moscow Times, Feb. 4).

February 7, 2005
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A Ukrainian investigation into allegations that nuclear-capable cruise missiles were exported to China and Iran has so far resulted in the secret indictment or arrest of at least six people, a high-ranking intelligence official said Friday (see GSN, Feb. 4).