Arms dealer guilty verdict welcomed

By agency reporter
28 Oct 2012

Amnesty International has welcomed the news that the British arms dealer Gary Hyde had been found guilty on charges of illicit arms deals.

The international arms dealer and former director of York Guns was found guilty for helping to ship tens of thousands of assault rifles and 32 million rounds of ammunition from China to Nigeria without a licence. Hyde was also found guilty for concealing commission payments.

Amnesty International’s UK Arms Programme Director Oliver Sprague said: “Today’s guilty verdict for this notorious gunrunner shows that hard fought laws to regulate arms trafficking can bring those arms dealers who try to evade controls to justice.

“It's worth remembering that less than a decade ago no laws were in place to control UK arms dealers like Gary Hyde, despite the fact that they were sending huge quantities of weapons to some of the world’s worst human rights crisis zones, weapons that facilitated widespread violence including unlawful killings, rape and torture and contributed to the most appalling human suffering."

As Mr Hyde was found guilty in the UK, representatives from the world’s governments were meeting at the UN in New York to discuss the next steps in negotiating the first international Arms Trade Treaty.

Oliver Sprague added:“To be effective, this Treaty must have strong and binding rules at its heart that stop anyone supplying or brokering weapons where it is likely that they could facilitate serious human rights violations.”

[Ekk/4]

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