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Nuclear smuggler given suspended sentence

A Swiss engineer who admitted to trafficking nuclear material to rogue states has been handed a 13-year suspended sentence by a court in South Africa.

Daniel Geiges had been accused – along with a German and a Briton – of illegally trafficking nuclear equipment around ten years ago. He had admitted guilt in the scheme organised by disgraced Pakistani scientist AQ Kahn.

The ruling was in accordance with a plea bargain Geiges, 69, had organised with prosecutors in Pretoria. It means he may remain free but must follow strict conditions for the next five years.

Now a South African resident, Geiges is in the late stages of cancer.

One of the largest customers of the operation had been the government of Moammar Gaddafi. But in 2003 the network imploded when US and British forces intercepted a container ship bound for Libya carrying parts for a nuclear centrifuge.

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