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German company raided for Mexican arms sales

The Americas Post - Mexicans appreciate fine German workmanship

The factory of German arms manufacturer Heckler & Koch was raided on Thursday by some 300 German agents, on suspicion of bribery related to the sale of weapons to Mexico in 2005.

Authorities in Stuttgart confirmed that the search, which included the homes of some employees, was for evidence of bribes paid to Mexican officials for approval of arms contracts over several years.  The accusations include some German officials who prosecutors allege were also bribed.

For years investigators have suspected the German company of exporting arms to four states in Mexico “with violent internal conflicts”, in violation of German law.  Authorities did not specify who the recipients of the weapons were.  In January the Economics Ministry suspended all exports from that factory to Mexico.

Heckler & Koch was previously accused of violating an embargo on arms exports to Libya.  The company has always denied any role in illegal sales, but declined to comment on the latest accusations.

Other current customers include the German police and military, as well as other NATO countries.