- The convicted arms dealer sent a telegram to Trump warning he was in danger
- He invited the former president to Russia where he would have protection
- He cited the Manhattan DA’s probe following Trump’s arrest this week
By GEOFF EARLE, DEPUTY U.S. POLITICAL EDITOR FOR DAILYMAIL.COM
PUBLISHED: 07:18 AEST, 8 April 2023 | UPDATED: 08:12 AEST, 8 April 202
Former ‘Merchant of of Death’ arms dealer Viktor Bout has issued a bizarre warning to former President Donald Trump saying his ‘life is in danger.’
Bout, who is back in Russia thanks to a prisoner swap negotiated by the Biden administration for U.S. basketball star Brittney Griner, said he sent a telegram to Trump with the warning following the former president’s arrest and arraignment in Manhattan this week.
‘First and foremost, I consider that his life is in danger and that the legal process which has now begun in New York, won’t end in Donald Trump being convicted and barred from the election.
‘Most likely he will simply be eliminated there,’ he said.
Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, who was freed in a prisoner swap, said on Russian state TV that former President Donald Trump is in danger now that he has been charged in the Stormy Daniels case.
Bout, who served 14 year in prison in the U.S. before his release in the swap, got at least one thing wrong about the U.S. legal system. Trump, even if convicted of filing false business records related to the Stormy Daniels payoff, would not be barred from running for president.
He didn’t provide further evidence that Trump would be eliminated.
‘You will be welcome in Russia. You will have safe haven,’ he wrote, according to the document he shared.
He even adopted some of Trump’s own language, referring to an ‘evil swamp that had taken over.’
Bout, who was played by actor Nicolas Cage in ‘Lord of War,’ made the claim on Russian state television, as Newsweek reported, at a time of high tensions with Washington.
Bout made the unusual offer to invite Trump to Russia. Trump was investigated by former Special Counsel Robert Mueller for his and his campaign’s Russia ties. Trump continues to inveigh against the probe he calls ‘Russia, Russia, Russia,’ including after his arrest in New York this week.
Bout claimed Trump would be barred from the election, which is not the case under U.S. law. He said Trump should come to Russia where he could get security and protection, and lead an ‘uprising’ against ‘globalists’
Bout said he sent a telegram to Trump with the warning
‘You will be welcome in Russia,’ the convicted arms dealer told Trump
Bout said the legal process in New York won’t end. DA Alvin Bragg brought grand jury charges after the DA’s office declined to bring charges when Trump was in office
Trump criticized the prisoner swap that freed Bout
Said Bout: ‘Therefore, I think it’s in the best interests of all of humanity and primarily all of the American people to invite Donald Trump here, to Russia, to give him security and protection here so that he leads this uprising against the globalists and, most importantly, does not allow the elimination of the American people.’
The news came on a day that Wall Street Journal reported Evan Gershkovich was formally charged with espionage in Moscow.
The paper and U.S. officials have said emphatically that the charges are false. It comes amid Russia’s fury at the U.S., which has provided billions in military support for Ukraine after Russia invaded its neighbor last year.
National security spokesman John Kirby called it ‘inexcusable’ that Russia would not allow consular access. He is reportedly being held in a notorious prison where dissidents and others have been held since the Stalin era.
Trump blasted the swap that freed Bout last year, calling it ‘stupid.’
‘What kind of a deal is it to swap Brittney Griner, a basketball player who openly hates our country for the man known as “The Merchant of Death,”‘ Trump wrote on his Truth Social app.
He may have been referring to her call to stop playing the National Anthem before games to protest the killings of George Floyd and other African Americans by police amid nationwide protests.
Brittney Griner and Viktor Bout exchanged in UAE