(Reuters) - A New Jersey man was sentenced to nearly six years in prison on Thursday after admitting that he smuggled $65 million worth of sensitive electronics components to Russia as part of an illegal international procurement network.
Alexander Brazhnikov, 37, was sentenced to the 70-month prison term by U.S. District Judge William Martini in Newark, New Jersey, after pleading guilty in June 2015 to charges stemming from his role in the procurement network.
He was also fined $75,000 and ordered to forfeit $65 million in light of his plea to charges that he conspired to commit money laundering, smuggle electronics from the United States and violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.
The sentence was announced by U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman in New Jersey.
Jack Arseneault, Brazhnikov's lawyer, called the sentence "very fair under the circumstances," saying it was toward the bottom of what his client faced under federal sentencing guidelines.
Prosecutors said Brazhnikov, a U.S. citizen who was born in Moscow, was part of a sophisticated network that acquired large amounts of regulated electronic components from the United States and shipped them to Russia on behalf of companies there.
The companies, in turn, were authorized to supply the electronics components to Russian military and security forces as well as entities involved in designing nuclear warheads and weapons, prosecutors said.
Brazhnikov, who ran four New Jersey microelectronics export companies, at the time of his plea admitted to being responsible for nearly 2,000 illegal shipments from 2008 to 2014, prosecutors have said.
Prosecutors said Brazhnikov had conspired with his father, who owned a Moscow-based procurement firm that helped initiate the electronic component purchases.
(Reporting by Nate Raymond in New York; Editing by Leslie Adler)