News FocusNUCLEAR TRAFFICKING

Crime and (Puny) Punishment

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Science  01 Nov 2002:
Vol. 298, Issue 5595, pp. 952-953
DOI: 10.1126/science.298.5595.952

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Summary

KARLSRUHE, GERMANY-- A seizure of highly enriched uranium on the Bulgaria-Turkey border shows that heightened vigilance and high-tech forensics are not sufficient to deter would-be nuclear smugglers. The Bulgarian case also reveals that in many countries where the potential for smuggling is greatest, authorities lack the legal tools to give convicted smugglers much more than a slap on the wrist. The smuggler in this case was given only a fine.