• In this June 27, 2011 photo provided by the Moldova General Police Inspectorate, Teodor Chetrus is detained by a police officer in Chisinau, Moldova during a uranium-235 sting operation. In many of the smuggling cases in this former Soviet republic, ringleaders insulated themselves through a complex network of middlemen to shield the bosses from arrest. In this case, Chetrus was the go-between. Former Moldova Police investigator Constantin Malic recalls that Chetrus said, "I really want an Islamic buyer because they will bomb the Americans." (Moldova Police via AP)

    AP INVESTIGATION: Nuclear smugglers sought terrorist buyers

    CHISINAU, Moldova (AP) — In the backwaters of Eastern Europe, authorities working with the FBI have interrupted four attempts in the past five years by gangs with suspected Russian connections that sought to sell radioactive material to Middle Eastern extremists, The Associated Press has learned. The latest known case came in February this year, when a smuggler offered a huge cache of deadly cesium — enough to contaminate several city blocks — and specifically sought a buyer from the Islamic State group.