Nuclear materials smugglers arrested

March 11, 2013 at 6:21 AM

ANKARA, Turkey, March 11 (UPI) -- German and Turkish security forces arrested seven people suspected of smuggling nuclear materials to Iran, officials said.

The Haberturk newspaper reported Monday that alleged smugglers were arrested in both countries and are suspected of illegally shipping nuclear materials purchased in India and Germany to the nuclear facility in Arak, Iran.

The report didn't detail what the materials were.

Turkish authorities arrested a Turkish citizen of Iranian origin in Istanbul and an Iranian national at the Ataturk Airport. The second man was said to be one of the key figures in the smuggling plot, the report said.

Turkish authorities are searching for an Iranian couple believed to be involved in the network, the newspaper said. Authorities also reportedly seized documents related to the network's operations.

In Germany, authorities arrested five Iranian nationals.

The smugglers are suspected of conducting about 900 shipments of nuclear material from India and Germany to the Islamic Republic via fake companies registered in Istanbul, Haberturk said.

Operations to find additional suspects in both countries are ongoing, the newspaper said.

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