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IPFS News Link • Weapons/Weaponry

Government investigators successfully bought dangerous radioactive materials...

•, by: Ethan Huff

How easy is it to illegally buy a nuclear weapon in the United States? If the experience of investigators from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) is any indication, the answer is much easier than you might think.

According to reports, all it took was an easily forged license and a fake shell company to convince two U.S. vendors to ship dangerous radioactive material to what they thought was a legitimate source – but that in reality was just a sting operation.

A new report from GAO about the matter stated that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is utterly failing to properly regulate the sale and movement of nuclear weapons in this country if it is really this easy to get them through fraud.

The report explained that the watchdog group merely "provided a copy of a license that GAO forged to the two vendors" and voila: GAO "subsequently obtained invoices and paid the vendors."

GAO, of course, did not accept the shipment since it was just a test. The group said it "safely and securely" returned the radioactive material to the vendors without opening or doing anything with it.

"While radioactive materials have legitimate medical and industrial uses, the illicit possession, purchase and use of radioactive materials pose an extreme threat to homeland security," wrote Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-N.Y.), a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, to the NRC. Torres urged the regulator to tighten its process in order to avert a potential national security disaster.