Wednesday, June 20, 2001
Court Upholds Extradition Over Alleged Procedural Lapse
By a MetNews Staff Writer
The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals yesterday upheld the Hawaii conviction of a dual Greek-U.S. citizen who was extradited from Germany over assertions that the extradition documents failed to enumerate charges listed in the treaty.
Although an extradited person has the right to enforce “specialty”—a requirement that the receiving country proceed only upon enumerating substantive accusations that are listed in the extradition treaty—procedural violations do not give rise to individually enforceable rights, Judge Procter Hug wrote.
Defendant Pantelas Antonakeas, also known as Alex Antaeus, was arrested in California and tried in Hawaii on drug charges, he was convicted but fled before sentencing.
Arrested in Germany, he alleged that the supporting documentation required by the extradition treaty was provided after a treaty deadline had passed.
“Unlike specialty, which is a substantive requirement that goes to the heart of the requested country’s decision to allow extradition, a deadline is a procedural requirement without similar import,” Hug said.
“If a deadline is missed during the extradition process, the requested country can simply refuse extradition on that ground,” he added. “By contrast, once the person sought has been turned over to the requesting country for specified offenses, the requested country has no recourse if the offenses ultimately charged are different from the offenses upon which the extradition was allowed. For this reason, it is necessary to allow the person extradited to raise this type of treaty violation in the requesting country because the requested country has no opportunity to enforce the specialty provisions on its own behalf.”
The case is U.S. v. Antonakeas, 99-1002.
Copyright 2001, Metropolitan News Company