On Wednesday, Andreas Mueller, the Swiss federal Magistrate, recommended the prosecution of three Swiss engineers, supposedly linked to the CIA, upon allegations of nuclear weapons technology smuggling. Urs Tinner, his brother, Marco, and his father, Friedrich, appeared before Mueller following a six year long investigation into the case. The Tinners were originally arrested during 2004 on the suspicion of smuggling but later released. The men had insisted they worked as informers for the CIA since 2003. Mueller stated following the hearing to The Independent: "There are many parts. It's like a puzzle and if you put the pieces together, you get the whole picture."
The Tinners have been suspected of using the CIA for protection while supplying nuclear weapons technology to a Pakistani nuclear smuggling ring led by nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan. Khan has been dubbed the "father" of the first Pakistani atomic bomb and lives under governmental surveillance for supplying Iran, Libya, and North Korea with information for uranium enrichment programs.
Allegations have surfaced that officials in the United States attempted to coerce Switzerland into destroying evidence in order to maintain secrecy regarding the Tinners' work for the CIA. The Tinners have maintained that they collected pertinent information regarding nuclear programs in Libya and supplied the CIA with the information. The men also insisted they gave the CIA information regarding Khan's activities and network operations.
The Tinners have insisted they did not supply Khan with information.