Armenian gets 22 years in arms-trafficking sting - 2007-07-24
An Armenian immigrant was sentenced Friday to 22 years in prison for plotting to sell anti-aircraft missiles and other military weapons from the former Soviet Union to an FBI informant.
"I should have known better," Artur Solomonyan, 30, told a federal judge before learning his sentence. He said he had been irresponsible but got caught up in the scheme because he thought the informant could get him a green card.
Prosecutors said Solomonyan led a ring that conspired to import shoulder-fired surface-to-air missiles, rocket-propelled grenade launchers, anti-tank guided missiles and other weapons without a license. The only weapons actually delivered were a dozen firearms, including a machine gun.
Solomonyan and five co-defendants were convicted in July of charges including arms trafficking and firearms trafficking conspiracy.