In April 1998, a rebel commander who transported many of the weapons, Ilir Konushevci, accused Mr. Haliti of profiting from arms transactions, according to commanders present at the heated meeting. A few days later, he was ambushed and killed on the road outside Tropoja in northern Albania.
The commander had charged that Mr. Haliti was buying boxes of grenades at $2 apiece and charging the movement $7 for each grenade. The killing, although it took place in a rebel-controlled region in northern Albania, was blamed on the Serbs.
Other killings of rebel commanders and political rivals ascribed to Mr. Thaci are attributed to a struggle to consolidate control and eliminate potential challengers.