Arrested Former Diamond Trader Pivotal Figure In Criminal Web

World News
15/04/2015 09:06

According to the the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network (BIRN), the arrested former diamond trader Serge Muller, wanted by Belgian authorities on charges of participating in a cocaine smuggling ring, having links to organised crime and money laundering, is the pivotal figure in alleged drug smuggling, money laundering and arms trafficking. BIRN reveals that the Montenegrin government sold its multimillion euro defence firm, Montenegro Defence Industry (MDI), to an Israeli-Serbian consortium; Belgrade-based CPR Impex and Israeli ATL Atlantic Technology Ltd for 680,000 euro. BIRN’s investigation has discovered ATL is closely tied to Muller, who hasn't been active in the diamond industry for many years and is said to reside in Israel. The BIRN investigation further quotes a high-ranking source at MDI who said; “MDI and CPR [Impex] are useful as they still have access to the huge amounts of Yugoslav surplus weapons in Bosnia, Montenegro and Serbia and… Albania – tens of thousands of tonnes of ammunition and weapons which could be sold in third world countries”. Arms dealers told BIRN that western firms shied away from supplying small arms to such controversial conflicts, leaving businesses from the Balkans and former Soviet states to maintain the supply lines.