Imhausen: Plans For A Second Poison Gas Plant In Libya?

UNCLASSIFIED

PRIORITY ZYUW RUFHSGA1503 2221026

P 101026Z AUG 90

FM AMCONSUL STUGGART

TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7228

INFO AMEMBASSY BONN PRIORITY 6135
AMCONSUL HAMBURG 4738
AMCONSUL FRANKFURT 8694
AMCONSUL MUNICH 4915
USMISSION USBERLIN 4551
USDOC WASHDC

UNCLAS STUTTGART 01503

BONN FOR ECON/PAMELA WEBER
USDOC FOR 4212/ITA/IEP/OWE/WGER/VSTANOYEVITCH

E.O. 12356: N/A

TAGS: ETTC, MCAP, PGOV, PTER., GE

SUBJ: IMHAUSEN: PLANS FOR A SECOND POISON GAS PLANT IN LIBYA?

REF: STUTTGART 1244

1. EIGHT WEEKS AFTER THE CONVICTION AND SENTENCING OF JUERGEN HIPPENSTIEL-IMHAUSEN TO FIVE YEARS IN IMPRISONMENT FOR TAX EVASION AND EXPORT CONTROL VIOLATIONS, THE IMHAUSEN COMPANY IS ONCE AGAIN SUSPECTED OF HAVING DEVELOPED AND DELIVERED PLANS FOR A SECOND POISON GAS PLANT IN LIBYA. ACCORDING TO THE BADEN-BADEN BASED SOUTHWEST GERMAN TV AND RADIO STATION "SWF", THE COMPANY DEVELOPED PLANS FOR A SECOND PLANT BETWEEN DECEMBER 1988 AND JANUARY 1989, DURING THE MANNHEIM PROSECUTOR’S ONGOING INVESTIGATION OF IMHAUSEN’S ACTIVITIES. ACCORDING TO THE "SWF", THE NEW FACILITY, CALLED "PHARMA 2000" IS ALMOST IDENTICAL WITH THE RABTA PLANT. THE PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE SUSPECTS THAT THE PLANS ARE INTENDED FOR GADDAFI’S PLANNED POISON GAS FACTORY IN THE SEBHA OASIS, 650 KILOMETERS SOUTH OF TRIPOLI. ALTHOUGH MEMBERS OF THE MANNHEIM PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE AND THE BKA (BUNDESKRIMINALAMT) HAVE SEARCHED IMHAUSEN OFFICES IN LAHR AND BOCHUM AS WELL AS PRIVATE HOMES OF LEADING COMPANY OFFICIALS. UWE KUNTZE, COMPANY EXECUTIVE MANAGER SINCE APRIL 1989, REFUSED COMMENTS ON THESE EVENTS.

2. IMHAUSEN IS ALSO SUSPECTED OF COMMITTING FRAUD WITH FEDERAL RESEARCH FUNDS. THE COMPANY RECEIVED 19.6 MILLION MARKS FOR ITS PROJECT ON COAL LIQUIFICATION. ACCORDING TO THE PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE, THOSE SUBSIDIES ARE BASED ON FALSE INFORMATION HIPPENSTIEL-IMHAUSEN PROVIDED CONCERNING THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE AND PERSONNEL COSTS CONNECTED WITH THIS PROJECT. (HIPPENSTIEL APPARENTLY ADDED THE PERSONNEL COSTS OF THE "PHARMA 2000" TO THE COAL LIQUIFICATION PROJECT.)

3. COMMENT: HIPPENSTIEL-IMHAUSEN GOT OFF COMPARATIVELY LIGHTLY AFTER HIS FIRST BRUSH WITH THE LAW BY PLEADING GUILTY TO TAX EVASION. BUT, SHOULD THE "SWF" ALLEGATIONS PROVE TRUE, HIPPENSTIEL WILL BE FACED WITH ADDITIONAL CHARGES, LEADING TO A MUCH LONGER SENTENCE BASED ON ILLEGAL TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER. PLANNING A SECOND POISON GAS PLANT WHILE THE FIRST ONE IS ALREADY UNDER INVESTIGATION SHOWS A DEGREE OF COLDBLOODEDNESS (OR STUPIDITY) IN WHICH EXTENUATING CIRCUMSTANCES PLAY NO PART. IT COULD ALSO HELP THE FRG TO MOVE ITS NEW EXPORT CONTROL LAW THROUGH PARLIAMENT. END COMMENT. MOUNT BT.

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