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A U.S. woman is suspected of smuggling military hardware to Russia, although she firmly believes she was sending humanitarian aid to Russian orphans, ABC News.com reported, according to RIA Novosti.

The 44-year-old woman from Wisconsin found a packaging job on the Internet that involved changing packaging and address labels on parcels she received. The parcels contained sniper scopes, night-vision goggles and military gear, although she says she thought she was helping send clothing to Russian orphans.

“If ‘ABC Arms Dealer’ in California sends a package with a rifle scope directly to Russia that is going to raise a red flag and likely get stopped and searched. But a package being sent from a private citizen in Wisconsin might not get searched. That’s why they were using her,” ABC News.com quoted Capt. Bill Wallner of the Ripon Police Department, as saying.

All sensitive equipment was purchased in the United States using stolen credit cards. Police were tipped off about the scheme after an arms dealer in Iowa got suspicious about a discrepancy between the billing address and the shipping address on a purchased $1,600 rifle scope.

Police established that the woman was receiving several packages a day for weeks and was paid $30 for each shipped parcel. After police obtained a search warrant and examined the woman’s house they found 20 packages waiting to be mailed containing rifle and sniper scopes, night vision equipment, GPS units and camouflage clothing, worth a total of $15,500.

Police believe the woman was probably just an unwitting participant in the scheme and probably will not be charged.

Source: Defence Professionals

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