Thai authorities left nothing to chance as they extradited alleged arms smuggler Viktor Bout yesterday.
Giving Bout the boot took a week to plan
Snipers, commandoes called in for extradition
Suspected Russian arms smuggler Viktor Bout boards a private jet bound for the US at Don Mueang airport yesterday. SURAPOL PROMSAKA NA SAKOLNAKORN
Moving alleged Russian arms smuggler Viktor Bout out of the country was a highly secretive operation that became visible by the bands of snipers and commando escorts involved.
The operation took almost a week to prepare.
Maximum security measures were well planned and rehearsed over and over to ensure nothing went awry.
Yesterday morning, the Bang Kwang maximum security prison in Nonthaburi was filled with snipers from the Crime Suppression Division who scoured every inch inside and around the prison.
A commando team led by CSD acting commander Supisarn Pakdiparuenart and a US Drug Enforcement Administration team came to collect the 43-year-old former Soviet air force pilot at the prison at 12.50pm.
He was then escorted from his cell by a number of warders as he was discharged from the prison. Mr Bout had his fingerprints taken and underwent a physical examination.
He was whisked into a vehicle as part of a police convoy. It was one of two convoys to leave the prison; the other to divert attention.
Mr Bout was then taken to Don Mueang airport.
He was wearing a bullet-proof vest and a Kevlar safety helmet and was cuffed at the wrists and the ankles. The ‘‘Merchant of Death’’, as he was dubbed by a former British government minister, showed no signs of emotion or worry.
He was even heard whistling a song repeatedly during the short trip to the airport, a security source said.
‘‘Aren’t we going to Suvarnabhumi airport?’’ Mr Bout was quoted by the source as asking shortly after leaving the prison. The reply from the escorting officers was that Don Mueang was more convenient and it was easier to maintain security.
The authorities made a brief stop at the immigration police office on Chaeng Watthana Road. Mr Bout signed papers formalising his extradition procedure.
On arrival at Don Mueang, he was taken to the VIP room where he went through a final immigration clearance. Mr Bout was then escorted by Thai special forces to a chartered jet which took off at 1.27pm.
The abrupt departure of the alleged Russian arms smuggler left his wife, Alla, distraught. Ms Bout walked into Bang Kwang prison holding two bags of food for her husband. She burst into tears on being told he had been taken to the airport. She arrived at Don Mueang airport too late to see him off yesterday.
‘‘What can be done any more [now that] my husband is already extradited?’’ she asked, looking stressed.
Ms Bout told the Bangkok Post she felt very bad and still did not know what to do.
She has been in contact with the Russian embassy and would decide later what further steps she would take.
give the boot – to force someone to leave a job, place, etc. ขับไล่
sniper – someone who shoots at people from a hidden place ผู้ลอบยิง
commando – a soldier trained to attack in areas controlled by an enemy สมาชิกของหน่วยจู่โจม
extradition – sending someone accused of a crime back to the country where the crime was committed for trial or punishment การส่งผู้ร้ายข้ามแดน
alleged – claimed to be true although not yet proven ที่ถูกกล่าวหา
arms – weapons อาวุธ
smuggler – a person who takes things or people to or from a place secretly and often illegally ผู้ลักลอบนำเข้า
secretive – deliberately not telling people things ซึ่งปิดปาก
visible – able to be seen ที่มองเห็นได้
escort – a person or a group of people, vehicles, ships etc that go somewhere with another person, vehicle, ship etc in order to protect them or to prevent them from escaping คนที่คุ้มครอง
operation – a planned activity involving a lot of people, especially soldiers or police officers การปฏิบัติการ
maximum – the most possible ที่สูงสุด ที่มากที่สุด
security – protection; safety from attack, harm, or damage ความมั่นคง, ระบบรักษาความปลอดภั, ความปลอดภัย
measure – a firm action taken to solve a problem or stop an a dangerous unpleasant situation มาตราการ
rehearse – to practise something you are going to do or say ซ้อม
ensure – to make certain that something happens or is done รับรอง ให้ความมั่นใจ
go awry – to not happen in the way that was hoped or planned
suppression – stopping an activity from happening, in this case, criminal activity การปราบปราม
scour – to search a place thoroughly for something ค้นหา, ตรวจหา
acting – doing the work of the usual person in a particular job while they are not there, or until a new person starts ที่รักษาการแทน
commander – a police offer of high rank ผู้บังคับบัญชา
cell – a small room where a prisoner is kept ห้องขังนักโทษ
warder – someone whose job is to guard prisoners in a prison ผู้คุม
discharge – to allow someone officially to leave somewhere, especially a prison, hospital or a court of law ได้รับอนุญาตให้ออกจาก
fingerprint – a mark that you leave on something when you touch it, showing the pattern of lines on the skin of your fingers รอยนิ้วมือ
physical examination – a medical examination to find out whether someone is healthy enough to do something such as a particular job การตรวจร่างกาย
whisk – to move someone or something very quickly – พาออกไปอย่างรวดเร็ว
convoy – a group of vehicles (or ships) travelling together ขบวนรถ
divert attention – to take someone's attention away from something เปลี่ยนเส้นทางจาก
bullet-proof – strong enough to not allow bullets to go through กันกระสุน,ลูกกระสุนยิงไม่เข้า
vest – a sleeve-less covering for the top part of your body เสื้อกั๊ก
helmet – a strong hard hat that covers and protects the head หมวกกันน็อก
(hand)cuff – to put handcuffs (two metal rings joined by a short chain which lock around a prisoner's wrists ) on someone ใส่กุญแจมือ
wrist – the part of your body between your hand and your arm ข้อมือ
ankle – the part at the bottom of your leg where your foot joins your leg ข้อเท้า
dubbed – given a name ตั้งฉายา, ตั้งชื่อเล่นให้
emotion – strong feeling such as anger or love, or strong feelings in general อารมณ์
whistle – to make a tune or musical notes by forcing air through your mouth เป่าปาก
source – someone who gives information แหล่งข่าว
quote – to repeat the words that someone else has said or written ยกคำพูดมา
convenient – easy to use or suitable for a particular purpose สะดวก
authorities – people who have the power to make decisions or enforce the law เจ้าหน้าที่ผู้มีอำนาจ
immigration police office – the police agency dealing with people entering and leaving the country สำนักงานตรวจคนเข้าเมือง
formalise – to make something such as a plan, system, or agreement official
procedure – a way of doing something ขั้นตอนการดำเนินการ
clearance – official permission that allows someone to do something, to go to a particular country, or to be told particular information
chartered – hired especially for the use of a particular person or group เช่าเหมาลำ
abrupt – suddenly and unexpectedly, and often unpleasant กะทันหัน
departure – leaving ออกจาก
distraught – extremely upset, worried or confused จิตว้าวุ่น, ว้าวุ่นใจ, สับสน
burst into tears – to suddenly start crying ร้องไห้
see off – to go somewhere such as a station or airport with someone in order to say goodbye to them ส่ง
stressed – affected by pressure, worry, etc. วิตกกังวล
embassy – a group of officials who represent their government in a foreign country สถานทูต
step – one of a series of actions that you do in order to achieve a particular aim ขั้นตอน
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