07MOSCOW1718, EXTRANCHECK: POST-SHIPMENT VERIFICATION:

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07MOSCOW1718 2007-04-16 11:08 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXYZ0012
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #1718/01 1061108
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 161108Z APR 07
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC PRIORITY
INFO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 9318
RHMFIUU/US CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS MOSCOW 001718 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
USDOC FOR 532/OEA/MHAMES/LRITTER 
USDOC FOR 3150/USFCS/OIO/CEENIS/MCOSTA 
USDOC FOR 532/OEE/MO'BRIEN 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: BEXP ETRD ETTC RS
SUBJECT: EXTRANCHECK: POST-SHIPMENT VERIFICATION: 
TACTICA LTD., MOSCOW, RUSSIA, LICENSE NO. D358723 
 
REFTEL: USDOC 02446 
 
1. Unauthorized disclosure of the information provided 
below is prohibited by Section 12C of the Export 
Administration Act. 
 
2. Reftel 1 requested a Post-shipment verification to 
determine the legitimacy and reliability of the end- 
user, Tactica Ltd., Moscow, Russia. The company is 
listed on BIS license application D358723 as the 
ultimate consignee of 60 holographic sights model: 
552.A65, 180 holographic sights model: 551.A65, 120 
holographic sightings model: 512.A65, 240 holographic 
sights model: 511.A65 and 200 holographic sights 
model: 551.D1. These items are controlled for firearms 
convention, crime control, and UN sanctions reasons 
under ECCN 0A987. The licensee is L-3 Communications, 
1215 South Clark St., suite 1004, Arlington, VA 22202. 
 
3. On March 27, 2007, Export Control Attache Donald 
Pearce and FSN Natalya Shipitsina conducted the 
requested post-shipment verification with Tactica 
Ltd., 138 Varshavskoe Shosse, Moscow, Russia. The 
export control team met with Sergey Korznikov, 
Commercial Director and Alexander Zviagin, General 
Director. 
 
4. Tactica is a retail sporting goods and tactical 
supplies store, specializing in optics.  Mr. 
Korznikov, a former member of the Federal Security 
Service (Russian acronym FSB) Alfa Group, founded the 
company in 2004.  NOTE: FSB Alfa Group is a special 
operations capable anti-terrorist unit. END NOTE. The 
company started as an internet-based business, but 
expanded within weeks to a showroom when Korznikov's 
neighbor decided to invest 200,000 USD in the new 
venture.  Tactica imports 90% of its inventory from 
the United States, and is a distributor for U.S. 
manufacturers such as 5.11, Blackhawk, SureFire, and 
others. In addition, Tactica is the official law 
enforcement and military distributor for Leupold and 
Stevens optics of Oregon.  The company employs 11 and 
operates from its showroom and office in a multi- 
tenant commercial building in southern Moscow. 
 
5. The 265 weapons sights in reftel paragraph 12 were 
sold and transferred to law enforcement and military 
end users in Russia.  The team was allowed to examine 
the purchase records, and was given copies of the end 
use statements and invoices. The remainder of the 
units requested in the license will be ordered over 
the next year. Mr. Korznikov stated that it has been 
difficult to keep these types of optics in stock for 
more than a week, as the demand for them within the 
military and law enforcement tactical units is high. 
Mr. Korznikov noted that Alfa Group immediately 
purchased the first 100 sights delivered for use in 
counterterrorist operations.  Stock is maintained in a 
locked storeroom on site, and the store is protected 
by an electronic alarm system with remote monitoring 
by the security guards at the building complex. 
 
6. According to Mr. Korznikov, units are going outside 
of the normal procurement channels to directly 
purchase these commodities, as similar optics from 
Russia are not as good.  Mr. Korznikov reports that 
most of these purchases are guided from the field 
officer level, as the staff officers are reluctant to 
purchase western equipment.  This is due principally 
to a "KGB mentality" as Mr. Korznnikov labels it, that 
is common among the Generals.  The General Staff 
believes that the field level operators are well 
equipped; however most units in places like the 
Caucuses are depending on Soviet-era tactical gear. 
 
7. Often, former operators who have gone on to 
successful positions in business will, as a 
"humanitarian gesture" to their old units, finance the 
purchase of western equipment that the official 
Ministry of Defense supply chain will not.  Mr. 
Korznikov has worked closely with his former 
colleagues to get the units better tactical load 
bearing gear such as vests and rifle slings, as well 
as optics.  Mr. Korznikov assisted in arranging an 
information exchange on hostage rescue tactics between 
Alfa Group and the FBI Hostage Rescue Team, and is 
hoping to arrange for additional training for Alfa 
 
operators through U.S. contractor Blackwater. 
 
8. Recommendations: Post recommends Tactica Ltd., 
Moscow, Russia as reliable recipients of sensitive 
U.S. origin commodities. 
(FCS MOSCOW/SBOZEK/DPEARCE) 
BURNS

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