US arrests two for illegally exporting aviation tech to Russia

Department of Justice
The two men were operating a trading company in Russia

Two men in the US state of Kansas have been arrested on suspicion of illegally sending aviation technology to Russia.

Cyril Gregory Buyanovsky, 59, and Douglas Robertson, 55, owned and operated the KanRus Trading Company.

The two conspired to skirt US export laws to sell sophisticated aviation equipment to Russia, says the US Department of Justice.

If convicted, they face a maximum of 20 years in prison for exporting controlled goods without a licence.

They are also charged with conspiracy, falsifying and failing to file electronic export information, and smuggling goods contrary to US law.

Prosecutors said the two had since 2020 sought to evade US export laws, misstating the value and end destination of shipments by routing them through third-party countries.

Between November 2020 and February 2021, they received avionics equipment for repair in the US, according to the justice department, including a computer processor with a sticker for Russia's secretive security agency.

Mr Buyanovsky and Mr Robertson used a fraudulent invoice to identify the destination for the equipment as Germany, says the justice department.

The defendants also illegally sent avionics gear through Armenia and Cyprus to Russia without obtaining the proper licences, it is alleged.

The investigation was carried out by a justice department unit dedicated to enforcing sanctions imposed on the Russian government since its invasion of Ukraine.