(FreedomBeacon.com)- The release of the “Merchant of Death,” Viktor Bout, did not only face public backlash in the United States but in Africa as well, according to Free Beacon. Bout, a prolific arms dealer, was reportedly indirectly responsible for thousands of deaths on the continent, according to Hassan Bility, director of the Global Justice and Research Project.
One woman said that her family had nothing to eat during the civil war in Liberia when Bout was shipping weapons in the early 2000s. Kulah, a 28-year-old lawyer said that when he was a kid he remembers “rockets falling everywhere…falling on houses and killing everyone in the house.”
“I remember running home from the field and rockets were dropping,” Kulah said. “I saw dead bodies.”
The U.S. released Viktor Bout, also known as the “Merchant of Death” in exchange for basketball player Brittney Griner on December 8, prompting many to criticize the swap as unfair.
Bout was reportedly in an Illinois prison serving 25 years for conspiracy to kill American citizens and sending millions of dollars in weapons to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, such as missiles that were to be used for shooting down American military helicopters.
Bout was also described by the Department of Justice as a prolific arms dealer who arranged the trafficking of military-grade weapons from Liberia to Sierra Leone and Afghanistan.
Russia called the imprisonment “unlawful” and his 2012 sentencing “baseless and biased.”
Russian state media ridiculed President Biden over the exchange, with RT editor-in-chief Margarita Simonyan saying that she was not surprised the United States did not put up a harder bargain asking for former marine Paul Whelan, who is currently still sitting in a Russian prison since 2018 after being accused of espionage.
Whelan reportedly said that he was “greatly disappointed” in the decision.