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CEO Of U.S. Gun-Maker Faces Jail In Germany

A decade after Sig Sauer inked a deal to sell up to $306 million worth of pistols to Colombia's National Police, company CEO Ron Cohen is facing jail time in Germany for making the sale.

German prosecutors accuse Cohen of colluding with Sig Sauer's sister company in Germany to violate that country's export rules. Under German law, companies are prohibited from exporting firearms or other weapons to countries in conflict. That includes Colombia, which is slowly emerging from a half-century of armed conflict.

German officials allege Sig Sauer manufactured at least 38,000 pistols in the company's facility in the town of Eckernforde between 2009 and 2011, before shipping the weapons to its U.S. entity's headquarters in New Hampshire, which then completed the transaction with Colombia. Sig Sauer is alleged to have covered up the shipment's final destination by submitting false paperwork, known as end-use certificates, to German export officials, stating that the weapons were bound solely for the United States.

The stakes for Cohen are serious: If convicted, he faces up to five years in prison and millions of dollars in fines. Last week, a German court found arms-maker Heckler & Koch guilty of similar export-related charges involving a sale of weapons to Mexico. While a former CEO was acquitted, two employees received suspended jail sentences, and the company was ordered to repay $4.2 million.

https://www.npr.org/2019/02/25/696690043/ceo-of-u-s-gun-maker-faces-jail-in-germany

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