Joran van der Sloot challenges extradition to U.S.

May 9, 2012

CNN on May 9, 2012 released the following:

“From Mayra Cuevas, InSession

(CNN) — Joran van der Sloot told a judge and prosecutor Tuesday that he would prefer to finish serving a 28-year murder sentence in Peru rather than be extradited to the United States to face charges related to the disappearance of Natalee Holloway, his Peruvian lawyer said.

Representatives from the U.S. Embassy and the FBI attended the extradition hearing, which was not open to the public, Maximo Altez told InSession on Tru TV.

A conviction in the United States could affect van der Sloot’s chances of being paroled in Peru, said Altez. He noted that a long-standing extradition treaty between the two countries means that van der Sloot will likely be extradited, despite his stated preference about remaining in Peru.

Peruvian judges in January sentenced the Dutchman to 28 years in prison for the murder in 2010 of Stephany Flores. He is also the prime suspect in the disappearance of Holloway. U.S. authorities want to try van der Sloot on charges of extortion and wire fraud in the Holloway case.

“I think he will be extradited within the next three months,” Altez said last month. “He will go to trial in the United States. Once he is sentenced, he will return to Peru to finish serving his 28 years, and then go back to the States to serve whatever sentence he gets there.”

In June 2010, a federal grand jury in Alabama indicted him after allegations that he tried to extort $250,000 from Holloway’s mother, Beth Holloway. Van der Sloot offered to provide what turned out to be bogus information about the whereabouts of Holloway’s remains in exchange for the money, according to the indictment.

He was allegedly given $25,000, which authorities say he used to travel to Peru for a poker tournament.

If found guilty of extortion, he could be sentenced to 25 years in prison.

Van der Sloot admitted to killing Flores, 21, in his Lima hotel room. The judges gave him a sentence two years short of the 30-year maximum. They ordered he be expelled from Peru at the end of his sentence and required him to pay about $74,500 in reparations to Flores’ relatives.

Van der Sloot confessed to robbery in addition to murder, admitting that he stole Flores’ belongings, including more than $300 in local currency, credit cards and the victim’s van as a means to leave the country. He fled to Chile and was arrested a few days later.

Another van der Sloot attorney, Jose Luis Jimenez, has said that his client was under special stress the day of the 2010 murder, which marked five years after Holloway, an 18-year-old from Alabama, disappeared while vacationing on Aruba.

Van der Sloot, who was among the last people reported to have been seen with Holloway, was detained twice but never charged in the case.

“The world had been against him for five years before this case, for a murder he said he never committed and for which there is no evidence whatsoever,” Jimenez has said.

Investigators have said they believe van der Sloot killed Flores after she found something related to the Holloway case on his computer while visiting him in his hotel room. The two met while van der Sloot was in town for the poker tournament.

Judges described how Flores hit van der Sloot in the face after reading the item on Holloway, leading him to hit her in the face with his elbow. Flores fainted and van der Sloot tried to strangle her, but she was still breathing, so he suffocated her with his shirt.

Van der Sloot then tried to clean the room by removing the sheets and changing his bloodied shirt, they said.

He was caught in a taxi near the Chilean central coastal city of Vina del Mar.

Holloway’s body has not been found, and no one has been charged in relation to the case in Aruba.

About 6½ years after Holloway was last reported seen, in May 2005, she was declared legally dead.”

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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 and Peru 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 Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

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.

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Marina Talashkova to remain in custody in Canada until her actual extradition hearing date

April 18, 2012

The Voice of Russia on April 17, 2012 released the following:

Liudmila Chernova

“Marina Talashkova to stay in Canada until her extradition

Russian flight attendant Marina Talashkova will remain in custody in Canada until her actual extradition hearing date set by Canadian Ministry of Justice.

Senior Consul of the Russian Consulate in Toronto Igor Kiikov said the next hearing would take place in several weeks.

Kiykov: “The next hearing date is set for May 24. During that hearing the detailed examination of all or part of the charges will be made in a narrow aspect. And it will be decided if the evidence and charges are serious enough, and if they are considered to be a crime according to the Canadian law, as if a similar crime was committed in Canada.”

Talashkova’s Toronto lawyer Tyler Hodgson said that before the third scheduled court appearance the Canadian authorities had provided the defense with the American statement of the case.

Hodgson: “The Americans as they are required due to the extradition act have provided certification from the prosecuting authorities that they have evidence available to call in relation to the offenses for what they seek to extradite her.”

Hodgson added that Canadian justice officials agreed to continue with judicial proceedings.

Hodgson: “The authorizations proceed from the Canadian Ministry of justice on extradition hearing relating to one count of fraud and one count of possession of stolen property.”

Talashkova is accused of an alleged involvement in a multi-dollar Internet fraud case that occurred in America.

A Federal Grand Jury indicted six foreign nationals, three of whom are Russian, on charges of defrauding American car buyers through well-known websites, such as eBay Motors, Auto Trader, Yahoo Auto, Edmunds.com and Craigslist. According to the indictment, for 3 ½ years the members of the conspiracy allegedly offered vehicles for sales on various legitimate websites, and after a price was negotiated, the defendants allegedly sent fraudulent invoices. The collected money was siphoned from escrow accounts to Europe.

Hodgson noted that according to the indictment, Talashkova withdrew money from various bank accounts in Nevada that she opened in her own name. The deposits were made people attempting to purchase vehicles, but vehicles were never provided.

Hodgson: “What I would point out is that there is no allegation that Marina opened any bank accounts using second identification or passports, which is alleged for the other members of the conspiracy. And her involvement is limited essentially to a one week period in July of 2007. So I think even on the documents that American authorities have provided, her involvement is quite limited.”

Kiikov said that Talashkova had already received her case file.

Kiikov: “She does not speak English well enough, and we will demand to provide her with the certified translation of these materials.”

On its behalf, Russia raised concerns over Talashkova’s case as the Americans failed to use the 1999 Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty, advising direct assistance between Russia and America and not the third party.

Hodgson: “I think that certainly will become a live issue in her extradition hearing.”

Talashkova was detained by the Canadian authorities on January 15 by the US request. The Russian General Consulate in Toronto was informed by Canadian authorities the same day. However Russia did not receive an official note from America. The stewardess has denied any involvement in illegal activities.

Hodgson stressed that the ignoring of obligation to use the treaty is Russia’s firm position, which is stated in the correspondence to the Canadian Department of Justice.

Hodgson: “The fact that they failed to do so and waited until she arrived in Canada isn’t a decent process. And that is certainly something that we’ll be advocating during the extradition hearing and ultimately it will be up to the judge to decide.”

Voice of Russia tried to reach the US Justice Ministry for comment, but received no answer.

Not many are familiar with the pitfalls of extradition procedure. Hodgson pointed that the test to extradite somebody differs from the test to prove a criminal conviction.

Hodgson: “In order for the Americans to convict Marina or anyone of the criminal offense, they have to prove it beyond the reasonable doubt. To extradite somebody is a much lower threshold test and essentially it is that the prosecuting authorities, in this case the United States, simply are able to provide some evidence of a criminal conduct and the judge that presides the extradition hearing is not really allowed to delve into the quality of the evidence and to assess whether a knowledge is credible. So, it is a much lower threshold.”

Talashkova is being held in Milton women’s prison in the Ontario province, 37 miles away from Toronto in a two-person prison cell.

Kiikov said that she doesn’t have any complaints on the conditions in jail.

Kiikov: “The representatives of Trans Air regularly visit Marina in jail. We have also been there to check the conditions of detention. Canadian jails are quite clean, so there are no complaints in this regard. The food is good there. She has an opportunity to take Russian books from the library given there by us, as they did not have any books in Russian there before. And they promised to buy her an English-Russian dictionary.”

Kiikov said the consulate continues to stay in contact with Talashkova, and assist with what is necessary.

Kiikov: “We work very closely with the lawyer. Her mother came to visit her and looked at the conditions in the jail. But there is no essential decision on her detention and extradition.”

Hodgson noted though Talashkova is upset and confused, she is trying to persevere.

Hodgson: “I think that she is strong and she is holding together as best as she can in these circumstances. I can tell you that her mother visited her from Russia around a month ago and I think that was certainly helpful.””

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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 and Canada 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 C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


U.S. busts an alleged global online drug market, arrests eight

April 17, 2012

Chicago Tribune on April 16, 2012 released the following:

“Dan Whitcomb | Reuters

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Eight men charged with running an elaborate online narcotics market that sold drugs to 3,000 people in the United States and 34 other countries have been arrested following a two-year investigation dubbed “Operation Adam Bomb,” prosecutors said on Monday.

The secret ring known as “The Farmer’s Market” operated through the TOR computer network, which allows users to communicate anonymously, according to a federal grand jury indictment unsealed on Monday in Los Angeles.

The online drug market provided order forms and customer service, guaranteeing delivery in exchange for a commission and accepting payment through PayPal, Western Union and other means, the indictment charges.

Authorities said the defendants were accused of running one of the most sophisticated drug marketplaces on the Internet and said the prosecution represented a first of its kind.

“The drug trafficking organization targeted in Operation Adam Bomb was distributing dangerous and addictive drugs to every corner of the world, and trying to hide their activities through the use of advanced anonymizing on-line technology,” Briane Grey, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration acting special agent in charge, said in a written release.

“Today’s action should send a clear message to organizations that are using technology to conduct criminal activity that the DEA and our law enforcement partners will track them down and bring them to justice,” Grey said.

Marc Willems, 42, who is accused of creating and running “The Farmer’s Market,” was taken into custody at his home in Lelystad, Netherlands, by Dutch authorities, U.S. Attorneys spokeswoman Gymeka Williams said.

Law enforcement officials in Bogota arrested 42-year-old Michael Evron, a U.S. citizen living in Argentina who allegedly oversaw technical and customer support for the online marketplace, as he was attempting to leave Colombia, Williams said.

Jonathan Colbeck, 51; Brian Colbeck, 47; Ryan Rawls, 31; Jonathan Dugan, 27; George Matzek, 20; and Charles Bigras, 37, were arrested at their respective homes in Iowa, Michigan, Georgia, New York, New Jersey and Florida.

All eight defendants were charged with federal drug trafficking and money laundering charges and prosecutors had filed extradition papers to return Willems and Evron back to the United States for trial, Williams said.

Each faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted.

According to the 66-page indictment, “The Farmer’s Market” allowed independent sources to advertise illegal drugs – including LSD, ecstasy, fentanyl, mescaline ketamine, DMT and high-end marijuana – for sale to the public.

The deals were allegedly handled through the online marketplace, which processed more than 5,200 orders for controlled substances valued at more than $1 million between January 2007 and October 2009, the indictment charges.

The law enforcement operation was called “Adam Bomb” because the original name of the marketplace was Adamflowers, according to the indictment.

According to its website, TOR offers free software and an open network that allows users to defend against “network surveillance that threatens personal freedom and privacy.””

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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.


American held for extradition over alleged subprime fraud

April 13, 2012

BrisbaneTimes.com.au on April 13, 2012 released the following:

“Leonie Lamont

THE fallout from the US subprime crisis has washed up on Australian shores – the Gold Coast – with US authorities seeking to extradite an American accused of money laundering and wire and bank fraud.

The US proceedings came to light after James Scott Taylor, 51, who is described as a real estate consultant and property developer on the Gold Coast, made an unsuccessful application to the Federal Court to release him on bail after he was taken into custody last week.

In court documents, the US Government alleges that during 2001- 2002 Mr Taylor ”knowingly executed and attempted to execute a scheme to defraud issuers of residential home loans” in Colorado, and named eight banks in the indictment.

It claimed he prepared home loan applications in the names of people that contained ”materially false and fraudulent representations,” including representations about the applicants’ employment, income and intention to use the homes as their primary residences.

Many of the applications were to so-called low-doc lenders – those willing to issue loans without extensive documentary evidence of income and employment. However, it alleged that in some cases Mr Taylor prepared documents to support the fraudulent representations.

The indictment further claims that, while it was put to the lenders that many of the applicants were using their own funds to pay deposits, ”in most instances Taylor or his associates provided the funds used to make down-payments,” through his company Dingo Trading Ltd.

It claims the funds were returned to Mr Taylor through disbursements when the loans were released to the borrowers. Finally, it alleges it was part of Mr Taylor’s scheme that the applicants used the loans to buy properties owned by his company JJReal Estate Investments Inc.

Mr Taylor told the court his wife and adult children were Australian, that he lived at Mermaid Beach and had substantial business, commercial and property interests in Australia. This was both through his private company 3JL Pty Ltd and as a consultant to other property developments on the Gold Coast. BusinessDay understands he did some work for Colliers on the Gold Coast.

He said he had migrated to Australia before he received any notice of the charges against him. There had been a four-year delay between the grand jury indictment in 2007, and he said he had co-operated with the authorities in the US during their investigations. He denied he was a flight risk.

Mr Taylor was originally arrested last October, but was on bail pending the outcome of an extradition hearing heard by Magistrate Duroux in the Southport Magistrate’s Court.

The magistrate determined last week that Mr Taylor was eligible to be surrendered to the United States, and cancelled bail.

While Mr Taylor had originally sought a review of the magistrate’s decision, lawyers acting for Mr Taylor yesterday filed a notice of discontinuance.”

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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 and Australia 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 C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


U.S. extradites Colombian accused of taking Americans hostage

March 12, 2012

CNN on March 12, 2012 released the following:

“By the CNN Wire Staff

(CNN) — U.S. authorities have extradited a suspect from Colombia whom they accuse of holding three American citizens hostage, the Justice Department said Monday.

Alexander Beltran Herrera, 35, was scheduled to be arraigned at 11:15 a.m. ET Monday in Washington on charges in connection with the hostage taking of Americans Marc Gonsalves, Thomas Howes and Keith Stansell.

Alleged leftist guerrillas from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, abducted the three U.S. defense contractors in 2003, the Justice Department said. They were among 15 hostages freed in a 2008 rescue mission.

For part of a two-year period beginning in November 2004, Beltran Herrera was responsible for moving the hostages and keeping them imprisoned, the Justice Department said in a statement Monday.

“Throughout the captivity of these three hostages, FARC jailors and guards, including Beltran Herrera, used choke harnesses, chains, padlocks and wires to restrain the hostages, and used force and threats to continue their detention and prevent their escape,” the statement said.

Beltran Herrera is an accused member of the FARC, the Justice Department said.

A federal indictment charges Beltran Herrera with one count of conspiracy to commit hostage taking, three counts of hostage taking, one count of using and carrying a firearm during a crime of violence, one count of conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists and one count of conspiracy to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization.

He faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted of the charges.

The indictment names 17 other accused members of the FARC as defendants.

“Today’s extradition underscores our resolve to hold accountable all those responsible for this crime and we will not rest until every one of them is brought to justice,” said Lisa Monaco, assistant attorney general for national security, in a statement.”

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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 and Colombia 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.


Suspected killer of U.S. Border agent extradited from Mexico

October 17, 2011

Examiner on October 17, 2011 released the following:

“Jim Kouri, Law Enforcement Examiner

Marcos Rodríguez-Perez, one of five individuals charged with being involved in the 2009 murder of Border Patrol Agent Robert W. Rosas, Jr., was arraigned Friday in federal court in San Diego, California.

Rodríguez-Perez was arrested by Mexican authorities on April 11, 2011, in Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico and was extradited from Mexico on October 13, 2011, escorted by special agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.

The extradition of Rodríguez-Perez leaves only one suspect involved in the murder of Agent Rosas at large.
According to court documents, Agent Rosas was shot and killed on July 23, 2009, while he was on a routine patrol near Campo, California. José Juan Chacón-Morales, José Luis Ramirez-Dorantes, Marcos Rodríguez-Perez, Emilio Samyn Gonzales-Arenazas, and Christian Daniel Castro-Alvarez are accused in separate charging documents with traveling in Mexico to the United States-Mexico international border near Campo, California on July 23, 2009.

The indictments charge that Rodríguez-Perez, Gonzales-Arenazas, and Castro-Alvarez illegally entered the United States with firearms for the purpose of robbing a Border Patrol agent of government property. Chacón-Morales and Ramirez-Dorantes remained in Mexico to act as armed lookouts.

While Agent Rosas was engaged in the performance of his duties, Rodríguez-Perez, Gonzales- Arenazas, and Castro-Alvarez lured Agent Rosas out of his vehicle for the purpose of robbing him. It is alleged that during the course of the robbery, Agent Rosas was shot multiple times by Rodríguez-Perez, Gonzales-Arenazas, and Castro-Alvarez before they fled to Mexico with his gear bag, handcuffs, firearm, and night vision goggles.

On November 20, 2009, Castro-Alvarez waived indictment and entered a guilty plea, pursuant to a plea agreement, to murder of a federal officer committed in perpetration of a robbery. On April 29, 2010, Castro-Alvarez was sentenced to serve 40 years in federal prison.

Subsequently, Chacón-Morales, Ramirez-Dorantes, Rodríguez-Perez, and Gonzales-Arenazas each were indicted for conspiracy (robbery of personal property of U.S. and unlawful confinement of a federal officer), robbery of personal property of the United States, unlawful confinement of a federal officer resulting in death, murder of a federal officer committed in perpetration of a robbery and unlawful confinement, use and carrying of a firearm during the commission of a crime of violence.

On June 11, 2010, Ramirez-Dorantes was arrested by Mexican authorities pursuant to a provisional arrest warrant submitted to Mexico by the United States. He was subsequently extradited to the United States on December 9, 2010. A trial date of December 6, 2011 is set for Ramirez-Dorantes.

Gonzales-Arenazas was arrested by Mexican authorities pursuant to a provisional arrest warrant on October 8, 2010. He was subsequently extradited to the United States on March 16, 2011. On July 25, 2011, he pled guilty to the murder of Agent Rosas, and a sentencing hearing is scheduled for January 19, 2012 before United States District Court Judge M. James Lorenz.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (“ICE-HSI”) are jointly investigating Agent Rosas’ murder.

José Juan Chacón-Morales remains at large, and FBI and ICE-HSI are requesting assistance from the public in finding his whereabouts.”

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.