The Panamanian Deputy Foreign Minister Alvaro Aleman assured that the ex-General Manuel Antonio Noriega, serving a 7 year prison sentence in France for money laundering, could be extradited to Panama in October.
Aleman announced that France is expected to tell Panama’s government the exact date for Noriega’s extradition, after the U.S. government approved the solicited extradition, so he can serve sentences for up to 67 years for the crimes he convicted of. Noriega’s convictions in Panama include ordering the murder of political opponents, as well as embezzlement and corruption.
In 1992, he was convicted in federal court in Miami of turning Panama into a transshipment point for Colombian traffickers smuggling cocaine to the United States, and was sentenced to 30 years.
On April 26, 2010, Noriega was put on an Air France flight for Paris after loosing a court battle seeking to be returned to Panama after completing his federal prison term. The State Department authorized his extradition.
Noriega was found guilty by the 11th chamber of the Tribunal Correctionnel de Paris of money laundering and was sentenced to seven years in prison on July 7, 2010. The tribunal also ordered Mr. Noriega to forfeit about $2.9 million that had been blocked in his French bank accounts.
Aleman said that the Panamanian government will name representatives that will travel to France with the aim of attending all the proceedings of Noriega’s extradition. Noriega is currently 77 years old and is sick, which does not exempt him from serving his sentences.
The majority of this article was published by Inside Costa Rica on July 26, 2011.
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