Florida Man Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy to Illegally Export Defense Articles to Russia
Vladimir Nevidomy, 31, of Hallandale Beach, Florida, pleaded guilty on March 19, to conspiring to illegally export military-grade night vision and thermal vision devices and ammunition primers to Russia.
Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers, U.S. Attorney Benjamin G. Greenberg for the Southern District of Florida, Special Agent in Charge Robert Lasky of the FBI’s Miami Field Office, and Special Agent in Charge Mark Selby of Homeland Security Investigation’s (HSI) Miami Field Office made the announcement.
According to information contained in court documents, from as early as April 2013 through November 2013, customers in Russia contacted Nevidomy by email requesting night vision rifle scopes, thermal monoculars and ammunition primers, all of which were on the U.S. Munitions List and subject to export control by the U.S. Department of State. Nevidomy proceeded to obtain at least three ATN MARS 4x4 night-vision rifle scopes and an ODIN 61BW thermal multi-purpose monocular from U.S. vendors by falsely representing to the vendors that the items were not for export.
On or about April 16, 2013, a co-defendant caused a wire transfer from a Shanghai, China bank account in the amount of $11,755 for the purchase and shipment of two ATN MARS 4x4 night-vision rifle scopes. That same day, Nevidomy paid $9,599 to a U.S. vendor for the purchase of those two night-vision rifle scopes. On or about May 2, 2013, Nevidomy also caused a wire transfer in the amount of $10,000 to be sent to a U.S. vendor for the purchase of the ODIN 61BW thermal multi-purpose monocular.
Later, Nevidomy’s co-defendant caused a wire transfer from a bank account in Riga, Latvia in the amount of $18,036, part of which was for the purchase of a third ATN Mars 4X4 night-vision rifle scope. On the same day, Nevidomy caused a wire transfer in the amount of $9,599 to a U.S. vendor, part of which was for the purchase of the third ATN Mars 4X4 night-vision rifle scope.
After the U.S. vendors sent the night vision devices to Nevidomy in South Florida, he exported them to the co-defendant in Russia by either concealing the defense articles in household goods shipments sent through a freight forwarding company or using a private Russian postal service that operated in South Florida. In June 2013, Nevidomy aided and abetted the export of the ATN MARS 4x4 night-vision rifle scopes from the U.S. to the co-defendant in Russia, and in August 2013, he exported the ODIN 61BW thermal multi-purpose monocular from the U.S. to the co-defendant in Russia.
On or about July 19, 2013, the same co-defendant sent an email to Nevidomy requesting 1,000 large-rifle ammunition primers to be shipped to Vladivostok, Russia. On or about Oct. 2, 2013, Nevidomy attempted to export 1,000 Sellier & Bellot ammunition primers from the U.S. to the co-defendant in Vladivostok, Russia. These ammunition primers were seized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
These night vision rifle scopes, thermal monocular, and ammunition primers required a license or other authorization from the U.S. Department of State before being exported from the U.S. since they were on the U.S. Munitions List. A certified license history check revealed that neither Nevidomy nor his associates ever applied or attempted to apply for an export license from the State Department for the night-vision equipment or ammunition primers.
Sentencing is scheduled before U.S. District Judge Kathleen Williams, on May 25. Nevidomy, a Ukraine-born naturalized U.S. citizen, faces a maximum sentence of 5 years imprisonment.
In addition, on Feb. 5, in a separate federal case, Nevidomy pleaded guilty to passport fraud and conspiracy to commit passport fraud in the Southern District of Florida.
Mr. Demers and Mr. Greenberg commended the investigative efforts of the FBI and HSI. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael Thakur and Rick Del Toro of the Southern District of Florida, and Trial Attorney Christian Ford of the National Security Division’s Counterintelligence and Export Control Section.