US asked to extradite Bangabandhu killer

March 29, 2012

bdnews24.com on March 29, 2012 released the following:

“New York, Mar 29 (bdnews24.com) – Bangladesh on Wednesday urged the United States to send back fugitive Rashed Chowdhury who was sentenced to death by a Dhaka court for assassinating independence leader Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

Bangladesh’s ambassador to Washington Akramul Qader requested US homeland security committee chairman Peter King to take necessary steps for the man’s extradition.

Currently there is no extradition treaty between Bangladesh and the United States but officials say the law allows the US government to send a convict through bilateral arrangement.

Republican congressman Peter King is a member of the US House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and co-chairman of Congressional Bangladesh Caucus.

Bangladesh embassy’s press minister Swapan Saha told bdnews24.com: “The ambassador informed the Congress Committee that Bangladesh’s highest court has sentenced Bangabandhu’s killer Rashed Chowdhury to capital punishment. Chowdhury is currently staying in the United States.”

“Rashed Chowdhury might have hidden information during US immigration. He can be expelled from United States and handed over to Bangladesh in line with US law,” he added.

Saha said King had given his assurance to provide necessary assistance after holding talks with the US Department of State.

On Aug 15, 1975, a group of rogue military officers attacked the residence of then the Bangladesh president Sheikh Mujib, killing him and most of his family members.

The Supreme Court sentenced 12 people to death for their role in the assassination. Five of the accused – Syed Faruk Rahman, Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan, Muhiuddin Ahmed (artillery) Bazlul Huda and A K M Mohiuddin (lancer) – were hanged on Jan 28 last year.

The foreign ministry says it has information that Rashed Chowdhury is currently residing in Los Angeles and Nur Chowdhury in Toronto, Canada.

It had sent letters to both the countries last October but Canada refused to turn in Nur Chowdhury. Last year, foreign minister Dipu Moni held talks with US secretary of state Hillary Clinton to bring Rashed Chowdhury back.

Convicts Abdur Rashid, Shariful Haque Dalim, Moshlemuddin and Abdul Majed have are facing arrest warrants by Interpol.

Another killer Abdul Aziz Pasha died in Zimbabwe.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Christopher Tappin Extradition: US Judge Rules Businessman To Remain In Jail

March 5, 2012

The Huffington Post UK on March 5, 2012 released the following:

“A US judge’s decision to remand a retired British businessman in custody while he awaits trial on arms dealing charges was “heartbreaking”, his wife said tonight.

Elaine Tappin said it was an “outrage” that her 65-year-old husband Christopher has been refused bail after he was extradited to the United States two weeks ago.

Judge Robert Castaneda ruled Tappin must remain in custody after US prosecutors told the federal court in El Paso, Texas, he may be a “danger to the community” if released.

Mrs Tappin, 62, of Orpington, Kent, said: “This is an outrage. God only knows how he’ll bear up. It’s heartbreaking.”

Tappin has spent 23 hours a day locked in his cell at the Otero County detention centre in New Mexico since he was extradited to America.

His wife went on: “I am shocked and deeply disappointed.

“He’s a man of his word and is certainly not at risk of fleeing – where would he go?

“He doesn’t have his passport or access to money.

“Why has the British Government allowed him to be incarcerated in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day before he’s even been tried?

“Tony Blair helped the NatWest Three, why can’t David Cameron help Chris?”

Mrs Tappin added: “He’s not a danger to anyone – he’s a 65-year-old granddad.

“How is he supposed to prepare a proper defence when he’s only been allowed to communicate with his lawyers from behind a plastic screen?”

Tappin lost his two-year battle against extradition to America two weeks ago and denies attempting to sell batteries for surface-to-air missiles which were to be shipped from the US to Tehran via the Netherlands.

The president of the Kent Golf Union, who faces up to 35 years in jail if convicted, was escorted into the courtroom on Friday wearing an orange-red prison jumpsuit, with his feet and one hand shackled.

US marshals allowed the other hand to remain free so he could use a cane he needs to walk.

Assistant US attorney Greg McDonald asked the judge to keep Tappin in jail for the remainder of the proceedings.

“The risk is not that he’ll punch somebody in the face, but through the use of a computer and the knowledge he has, he might pose a danger to the community,” Mr McDonald said.

Tappin has no ties to the US and failed to disclose to court officials his frequent travels to Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and South Africa, he added.

But Kent Schaffer, representing Tappin, said if released, his client would have complied with any restrictions imposed by the court and his family was ready to post bail of 50,000 dollars (£31,600).

His case fuelled the row over the fairness of the extradition treaty between the UK and the US.

Attorney General Dominic Grieve QC said Tappin’s extradition highlighted problems with the treaty which were not “readily curable”, warning that many Britons were left uneasy when faced with the seemingly harsh and disproportionate sentences in the American justice system.

Other critics of the 2003 treaty, including Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, have described it as “one-sided”, but an independent review by retired Court of Appeal judge Sir Scott Baker last year found it was both balanced and fair.

Tappin’s extradition follows an investigation which started in 2005 when US agents asked technology providers about buyers who might have raised red flags.

Those customers were then approached by undercover companies set up by government agencies.

Briton Robert Gibson, an associate of Tappin who agreed to co-operate, was jailed for 24 months after pleading guilty to conspiracy to export defence articles.

Gibson provided ICE agents with about 16,000 computer files and emails indicating that he and Tappin had long-standing commercial ties with Iranian customers.

American Robert Caldwell was also found guilty of aiding and abetting the illegal transport of defence articles and served 20 months in prison.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

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We previously discussed the extradition treaty between the United States (US) and the United Kingdom (UK) here.

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Theresa May to review UK extradition treaty with US

February 22, 2012

The Guardian on February 22, 2012 released the following:

“Home secretary to lead thorough review of extradition treaty following anger at recent deportations, David Cameron says

Nicholas Watt, chief political correspondent

Theresa May, the home secretary, will conduct a “proper, sober, thoughtful review” into Britain’s extradition treaty with the US amid anger at a series of deportations, David Cameron has announced.

The prime minister told MPs the home secretary would take account of the views of parliamentarians after he was asked about the case of Christopher Tappin.

The retired company director from Kent is due to be flown to the US on Friday to face allegations of selling arms to Iran. Tappin, 65, admits shipping batteries that can be used in Hawk air defence missiles but says he thought they were for use in the car industry. He said he had no idea about their eventual destination.

Tappin’s case was raised by his MP, Jo Johnson, at prime minister’s questions on Wednesday. Johnson, the MP for Beckenham and brother of the London mayor, Boris Johnson, said: “US marshals will on Friday escort my 65-year-old constituent Chris Tappin from Heathrow to a jail in Texas, where he will face pressure to plea-bargain in order to avoid lengthy incarceration pending a financially ruinous trial for a crime he insists he did not commit.

“Could the prime minister say what steps he is considering to reform the US/UK extradition treaty that been so unfair to the likes of Gary McKinnon and now my constituent, Mr Tappin?”

The prime minister indicated the government would not block the extradition of Tappin. He said: “I quite understand why [he] raises this case of his constituent. In the case of Chris Tappin obviously he has been through a number of processes including the magistrates court and the high court. The home secretary has thoroughly considered his case.”

Cameron cited an independent report last year by Lord Justice Scott Baker, which said that the 2003 Extradition Act was not “lopsided” or biased against British citizens. Critics have said that the act, drawn up in haste after the 9/11 attacks, is unfair because British citizens do not enjoy the same level of legal protection as US citizens.

Gary McKinnon, the alleged computer hacker who has Asperger’s syndrome, faces extradition under the treaty.

The prime minister said: “[Jo Johnson] raises the point more generally of Sir Scott Baker’s report into the extradition arrangements, which he has made and we are now considering. He did not call for fundamental reform.”

But Cameron said May would lead a thorough review of the extradition treaty. “The home secretary is going to carefully examine his findings and also take into account the views of parliament that have been expressed in recent debates.

“Of course balancing these arrangements is absolutely vital. But I think it is important that at the same time we remember why we enter into these extradition treaties, which is to show respect to each other’s judicial processes and make sure that people who are accused of crimes can be tried for those crimes and Britain can benefit from that as well. So a proper, sober thoughtful review needs to take place and this case shows why.””

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

————————————————————–

We previously discussed the extradition treaty between the United States (US) and the United Kingdom (UK) here.

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


US cites United Nations treaty in Megaupload case

February 13, 2012

Computer World on February 13, 2012 released the following:

“Judge in bail hearing questions whether Dotcom extradition is lawful

BY MICHAEL FOREMAN

The United States government will be relying on a United Nations treaty aimed at combating international organised crime as the legal basis of its extradition to the US of Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom and other co-accused.

While the extradition hearing is scheduled to take place on February 22, some of the legal arguments that will be made at that hearing were foreshadowed at a bail-refusal appeal heard at Auckland High Court on February 3.

During the bail appeal, Dotcom’s lawyer Paul Davison QC, said the US was seeking to have Dotcom and other employees of Megaupload extradited in relation to charges of conspiracy to commit racketeering, money laundering and copyright infringement.

At this point the judge, Justice Raynor Asher interrupted Davison, asking him: “These are extradition offences? I assume you have satisfied yourself on that?”

Davison replied that criminal breach of copyright was not a scheduled offence [under New Zealand’s extradition treaty with the US]. The racketeering charge was said to have a similarity with a scheduled offence however “everything is derivative” from the copyright infringement charge.

“The funds which were derived from the business activity and the involvement of a group of people around the business activity is the basis of the allegation that this was racketeering … the movement of business proceeds and funds then becomes an allegation of money laundering, but the whole thing is pinned back to the existence of a criminal breach of copyright.

“I am not able to advance a position at this stage which would be as strong as to say that there is no strength to the US government’s case. But suffice to say that there is a substantial challenge to it, and it’s not at all clear that this is an extraditable situation.”

Asked whether he had discussed these matters with Crown prosecutor Anne Toohey, Davison said he had been waiting for ten or 12 days for the prosecution to respond to his request for documents.

“I have been frustrated by being unable to get access to a range of documents that underpin the steps that were taken to issue the provisional [arrest] warrant.”

“I have been requesting the Crown to provide me with the requisite documents, I have been told that the police hold the requisite documents and the police will respond.”

Davison said that the legal basis of the extradition request “may give rise to another proceeding”.

“It is a fundamental matter, it’s not being overlooked, and it is likely to be litigated,” he said.

Fergus Sinclair, a lawyer with the Crown Law Office who appeared as co-counsel with Toohey on behalf of the United States, said that while it was true no copyright offences were named in the extradition treaty, certain crimes where they involved trans-national organised crime, were subject to section 101b of the Extradition Act.

Under this section any offence which was punishable by a prison sentence of more than four years was deemed to be extraditable, and under the New Zealand Copyright Act the distribution of an infringing work could be punished by up to five years in prison.

Sinclair cited the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organised Crime (TOC), which was passed by a UN general assembly resolution in 2000, as the basis of invoking the organised crime provisions of the Extradition Act.

Under the terms of TOC Sinclair said an “organised criminal group” had to consist of a structured group of three or more persons acting in concert with the aim of committing serious crime.

He said there were seven defendants in the Megaupload case, and that according to US grand jury indictment of January 5 members of the Megaupload conspiracy engaged in criminal copyright infringement and money laundering on a massive scale with estimated harm to copyright holders in excess of US$500 million.

Since the bail appeal hearing, several legal commentators have expressed the view that the Megaupload extradition case could be appealed to the New Zealand Supreme Court.

IT lawyer Rick Shera said that Davison’s submissions reinforced his opinion that the extradition case would be complicated.

“My view has always been that there’s a clear issue as to whether the extradition treaty is the end of the story or whether section 101b of the Extradition Act would be involved. Whatever happens you still go back to the [New Zealand] Copyright Act where differences between the NZ and US legislation may become significant.

“I would expect that after the first or second round, one or other of the parties will appeal.

“There hasn’t been a case like this in New Zealand before and, as far as you can you look at it from a general perspective and considering what is at stake, you would want it to be heard by the Supreme Court.””

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Russia asks for extradition deal

February 12, 2012

UPI.com on February 10, 2012 released the following:

“MOSCOW, Feb. 10 (UPI) — Russian officials Friday asked the United States to sign a bilateral extradition treaty or join existing international conventions.

“The Justice Ministry proposes either signing bilateral treaties on the extradition of criminals and repatriation of convicts. The second variant for the U.S. is to join the existing convention mechanisms, we will try to persuade our U.S. partners to do this too,” Russian Justice Minister Alexander Konovalov said Friday.

Currently, the two countries have no extradition deal, RIA Novosti reported.

“We raised these issues more than two years ago, during the first visit of a justice ministry’s delegation to the U.S. So far, frankly speaking, the U.S. side remains reluctant to accept our proposals,” the minister said. “But, on the whole, we hope to persuade them and we aim to do our best.”

Konovalov said relations between the two countries have been strained by legal proceedings against Russian nationals in the United States who were extradited from abroad without Russia receiving timely notification.

“Such practices are absolutely unacceptable to us. We, of course, think that it is understandable. … But people should not be abducted on the territory of third states, they should not be extradited illegally. Legal instruments and mechanisms should be used, and we are going to further discuss the issue with the Americans,” Konovalov said.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

————————————————————–

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Duchess of York cancels U.S. trip, raises questions

January 17, 2012

CNN on January 17, 2012 released the following:

“From Max Foster, CNN

London (CNN) — The Duchess of York, who faces charges in Turkey for going undercover and secretly filming children at a state-run home for a 2008 documentary, canceled a recent trip to the United States because of the case, a source and her spokesman said.

The United States and Turkey have an extradition treaty and the cancellation raised the question of whether Sarah Ferguson is avoiding the United States because she fears being sent to Turkey.

The treaty, in fact, was a factor in her decision, a source close to Ferguson said. The source described the duchess as “pretty shaken” and “quite scared.”

Ferguson’s spokesman, however, said the duchess was advised she could travel to the United States, but her priority right now is to stay in Britain and focus on the case.

She feels the work she did in Turkey was completely valid and consistent with her ongoing support for humanitarian causes, spokesman James Henderson told CNN. Ferguson is consulting rights lawyers as well as attorneys in Turkey as she decides what to do next, he said.

The Ankara prosecutor’s office in Turkey accused the duchess of violating the private lives and rights of five children while filming a program for Britain’s ITV network, Turkey’s semiofficial Anatolian news agency reported last week.

A hidden camera was used during Ferguson’s visit to the Children’s Nurturing and Rehabilitation Center outside Ankara. She wore a disguise of a dark wig and headscarf for the filming.

Discussing the case, the Ankara chief prosecutor asked for a prison term of up to 22 years, six months, Turkish state TV reported.

There were no details on when a trial might take place, if at all.

A UK Home Office spokesman said: “It is not our usual policy to comment on individual cases.

“However, the Home Office can confirm it has received a formal request for mutual legal assistance concerning Sarah, Duchess of York. It is not appropriate to comment further.”

What Ferguson is accused of in Turkey would not constitute a crime in Britain.

The Duchess of York said in a statement: “I stand strong in the face of the rights of children, and I remain steadfast. Children are our future.”

ITV News spokesman Grant Cunningham said Friday: “ITV was made aware yesterday through media reports of charges related to our program being raised again.

“Charges were raised in 2008 and we said at that time that we firmly stand by our program and our position remains unchanged.”

The duchess was accompanied by one of her two daughters, Princess Eugenie, to film the ITV Tonight program in Turkey.

An ITV press statement at the time of the film’s broadcast in 2008 said the duchess, as part of a reporting team, had gone “undercover in one of Turkey’s worst institutions — capturing images that will shock and horrify.”

The “hard-hitting” program was intended to “help investigate the treatment of mentally and physically disabled children,” ITV said.

The duchess and her other daughter, Beatrice, traveled to Romania to see how state orphanages run for the second half of the program.

Ferguson is a former member of the royal family, having been married to Queen Elizabeth II’s son, Andrew, Duke of York. The couple divorced in 1996, after 10 years of marriage.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

————————————————————–

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Gary McKinnon’s mother: US extradition treaty is unfair

December 7, 2011

BBC on December 6, 2011 released the following:

“MPs have called on the government to reform the extradition laws to improve safeguards for British citizens facing trial abroad.

Many voiced concern about the case of Gary McKinnon, who is accused of hacking into US military computers and deleting files and is fighting extradition.

He faces a sentence of 60 years in the US, compared with the six months probation the CPS in the UK originally suggested.

Speaking along with Jago Russell, of Fair Trials International, Mr McKinnon’s mother, Janis Sharp, told the BBC that the current extradition treaty with America is very unfair.

She said: “I defend our right to have equality to Americans. If we want to extradite an American, we have to provide actual evidence in their court, which they can contest in a court.””

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

————————————————————–

We previously discussed the extradition treaty between the United States and the United Kingdom here.

————————————————————–

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Costa Rican doctor German Enrique Moreno Rojas Faces New Charges of Allegedly Sexually Molesting a Minor

August 26, 2011

The Tico Times on August 26, 2011 released the following:

“Child molester jailed, now what?

German Moreno was convicted of sexually abusing children in Costa Rica in 1993, but the doctor fled to the U.S. before he could be sentenced. On Monday, Moreno was arrested on new charges – but will the fugitive doc face justice this time?

For the third time in his life, Costa Rican doctor German Enrique Moreno Rojas has been charged with sexually molesting a minor.

Moreno’s latest arrest happened Monday after a 19-year-old Costa Rican filed a criminal complaint in Jacó accusing the doctor, who is a fugitive from justice in the United States, of sexually assaulting him when he was 16.

Agents from the Judicial Investigation Police, or OIJ, arrested Moreno, 50, at his mother’s residence in the northern San José district of Tibás. He had been staying there since closing his medical practice Aug. 6 in the southern Nicoya Peninsula town of Playa Carmen (TT, Aug. 19, 12). He was booked at downtown San José’s judicial headquarters and transferred to a holding cell in Jacó, on the central Pacific coast, pending a preliminary hearing.

Moreno did not respond to questions by The Tico Times at the time of his arrest.

A judge on Tuesday ordered Moreno held for three months in preventive custody while prosecutors build a case, a spokeswoman from the Chief Prosecutor’s Office said on Wednesday. Prosecutors had asked for six months of preventive detention, but a government official with knowledge of the hearing said most of the evidence in the case, including witness testimony, has already been collected.

Moreno was moved to a jail in the Pacific port city of Puntarenas. Investigators will collect more evidence in Puntarenas province before deciding if the case will proceed to a trial phase. The source said Moreno’s attorney did not request special protective measures for his client.

The Tico Times attempted to contact Moreno’s attorney, but was unable to reach him by press time.

The alleged victim in the case, who asked The Tico Times to withhold his name, said he filed a criminal complaint after learning through media reports that the doctor is wanted in the United States on nine counts of child sexual abuse in Houston, Texas (TT, Aug. 19, 12). An Interpol arrest warrant issued after Moreno fled the U.S. in May 2005 is still valid, although the Costa Rican Constitution bars nationals from being extradited.

Moreno also evaded jail by fleeing the country after being convicted in 1993 in Costa Rica of sexually molesting five boys in the Caribbean slope town of Turrialba.

“With the story going public, my client felt empowered enough to trust that Moreno would some day pay for his crimes,” said attorney Alexandra Morales, who represents the 19-year-old and his family.

Morales said Moreno was “obsessed” with her client, who lived with the doctor for two years in Playa Carmen, along with his mother and two siblings. It was during this time that the alleged abuse occurred. Prosecutors will not comment on the details of the abuse.

The family moved out of Moreno’s residence last December, but the doctor continued to harass and intimidate them, according to family members and witnesses who spoke to The Tico Times.

After meeting with a lawyer, a psychologist and a social worker, the family obtained a restraining order against Moreno last month in Jacó. They said he continued to contact them through an acquaintance.

Is a Costa Rican Trial Possible?

In Houston, Moreno faces charges of sexually abusing at least seven victims, all minors at the time the alleged abuses occurred. Although he cannot be extradited to the U.S., the constitution, Costa Rica’s penal code and an extradition treaty between the two countries allow Moreno to be tried in a Costa Rican court for his alleged crimes in the U.S., according to Costa Rica’s Chief Prosecutor Jorge Chavarría and other legal experts consulted by The Tico Times.

For Costa Rican prosecutors to move forward with that strategy, they must first receive an official request from the U.S.

“We can’t step on the United States’ sovereignty and start our own investigation for crimes committed on foreign soil. We need a formal request from the prosecutor in charge of this investigation in the U.S. in order to start coordinating the numerous aspects of this process,” Chavarría said.

Moreno’s 2005 sexual abuse case was headed by the Harris County District Attorney’s office in Houston, Texas. Donna Hawkins, a spokeswoman at that office, said the DA is aware of Moreno’s arrest in Costa Rica. She could not comment further by press time.

If an official request is made, Costa Rica’s Chief Prosecutor’s Office would coordinate both the relocation of evidence from the U.S. and the method for witness testimony, Chavarría said.

According to a U.S. Embassy official, under the bilateral treaty between Costa Rica and the U.S., a formal request for extradition must be made by the U.S. and denied on the basis of nationality by the government of Costa Rica. Only then can a U.S. court request local prosecution. Witnesses would be allowed to testify via video conference, the official said.

The U.S. Justice Department would not “confirm or comment on specific matters of extradition,” a department spokeswoman said. However, a spokeswoman for Costa Rica’s judicial system told The Tico Times on Wednesday that the Costa Rican government has not received an extradition request from the U.S. in the Moreno case, nor an official request from any U.S. government agency for judicial assistance.

“In the past we have had similar processes where criminal organizations were divided between the two countries. In those cases, we never had trouble, since U.S. authorities were always eager to collaborate and finance the cost of bringing witnesses here,” Chavarría said.

Longing for Justice

The latest accusations against Moreno surfaced because his accuser stepped forward after learning of the doctor’s other alleged victims in the U.S. It helped him overcome his fear of retribution, he said. He hopes the criminal complaint will help bring justice not only in his case, but in the U.S. case as well.

In Houston, some of Moreno’s accusers say they follow the news in Costa Rica online almost daily. They too say they are no longer afraid to speak out.

In Playa Carmen, news of Moreno’s arrest spread quickly. It was local neighbors who first alerted The Tico Times that the fugitive Moreno was living in their community, practicing medicine legally at a local clinic and spending time at local schools.

Residents are relieved that Costa Rican police were able to arrest Moreno, thanks to a concerted community effort to raise awareness about his past. But they still worry that the doctor might somehow slip away, again.”

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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Extradition Treaty Law and Procedure – Part 33

July 18, 2011

Retroactive Effect of Treaty

While the majority of extradition treaties remain silent as to whether they apply to offenses committed prior to their entry into force, United States courts have held that this silence must be construed as having retroactive effect. This is not a violation of the Ex Post Facto clause of the United States Constitution because the treaties do not criminalize acts that were not criminal prior to the execution of the treaty, but merely provide a means by which individuals who committed acts that were offenses at the time of their commission may be held to answer for those offenses.

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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Extradition Treaty Law and Procedure – Part 19

July 12, 2011

Amount of Evidence Required for a Finding of Extraditability

The amount of evidence required for a finding of extradition is not controlled by statute but rather by the applicable extradition treaty. However, most courts have held that the requirements of the Fourth Amendment are relevant. The requesting country is thereby required to provide sufficient evidence to establish probable cause to believe the individual sought for extradition committed the offense for which he or she is accused and that the individual who has been apprehended is in fact the person identified by that evidence.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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