Swiss official urges 3 charged with nuke smuggling

December 23, 2010 15:00

BERN, Switzerland — Smuggling charges should be brought against three Swiss engineers suspected of giving nuclear weapons technology to a rogue network in Pakistan, a magistrate said Thursday, in a case involving CIA ties, shredded documents and national security implications.

Investigating magistrate Andreas Mueller said his recommendation that the trio, two brothers and a father, face trial is based on an exhaustive probe into an alleged nuclear smuggling ring. Mueller submitted his confidential report to federal prosecutors, who will decide whether to bring charges on violating Swiss nonproliferation laws.Mueller oversaw the last three years of a six-year federal probe against Urs Tinner, his brother Marco and their father Friedrich. The politically sensitive case was slowed down after the Swiss government repeatedly ordered evidence destroyed in the case, allegedly under pressure from senior US officials.

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