Federal International Extradition
What is International Extradition?
International extradition is the formal process by which a person found in one country is surrendered to another country for trial or punishment.
What Laws Control International Extradition To The United States?
With some countries, like Mexico, the United States has treaties that control the extradition process. With other countries, like Colombia, countries extradite persons pursuant to their own internal laws.
What Is The Process To Extradite Persons To The United States?
International extradition to the United States is a complicated process, and it varies depending on which countries are involved. However, below is an example of how an extradition process would work.
First, U.S. federal agents (for example, the Drug Enforcement Administration or the Federal Bureau of Investigation) investigate a person located in a foreign country that they believe has violated United States federal law.
Second, a federal prosecutor in the United States presents evidence to a federal grand jury that the person has committed a crime under United States law. If the grand jury agrees with the Government, it will charge the person with a federal crime using a document called an indictment.
Third, a U.S. federal prosecutor prepares a packet of documents, which may include:copies of the laws that the prosecutor believes the person to be extradited has violated; certified copies of any arrest warrant or indictment; an affidavit written by a U.S federal agent that contains a summary of the evidence against the person to be extradited.
Fourth, the U.S. federal prosecutor will have these documents translated to the language of the country to which the extradition request will be sent.
Fifth, the U.S. federal prosecutor will send the package of documents to the United States Department of State in Washington, D.C., who will then send them to the U.S. Embassy in the foreign country where the extradition is sought.
Sixth, the U.S. Embassy in the foreign country where the extradition is sought will give the documents to the foreign government.
Seventh, the foreign government may decide to arrest and detain the person for whom extradition is sought.
Eighth, the foreign government will send the U.S. Government's extradition request to its own court system so that the foreign government's judges can decide whether or not the U.S. Government has satisfied the requirements of any treaty or the foreign government's internal laws.
Ninth, the foreign court will approve or deny the U.S. Government's extradition request.
Tenth, if the foreign court approves the U.S. Government's extradition request, U.S. federal agents will travel to the foreign country and transport the extradited person to the United States for prosecution.
What is the Process to Extradite Persons from the United States to Another Country?
International extradition from the United States to another country is also a complicated process. Below is an example of how an extradition process from the United States to another country would work.
First, a foreign government makes a request to the United States Department of State for an individual to be extradited from the United States to that foreign country. The foreign government will include in the request information about the person sought for extradition, the alleged crime, and the evidence against the person.
Second, the United States Department of State reviews the foreign government's request along with any applicable treaty and laws, and then decides whether or not to send the extradition request to the United States Department of Justice.
Third, the United States Department of Justice reviews the foreign government's request along with any applicable treaty and laws. If all is in order, the Department of Justice will send the request to the United States Attorney's Office in the federal district where the person sought to be extradited is located. That U.S. Attorney's Office will assign an Assistant United States Attorney to handle the extradition request.
Fourth, the assigned Assistant United States Attorney will request that a United States magistrate or district court judge issue an arrest warrant for the person that is the subject of the extradition request.
Fifth, after the person is arrested, a federal judge will determine if the person arrested is the person that is the subject of the extradition request, and whether or not the person is represented by an attorney.
Sixth, the federal judge will inform the arrested person of the charges against them and the nation that is seeking to extradite them. The judge will then inform the person that they have a right to a public extradition hearing, and the circumstances under which the United States Government will pay the costs for subpoenaing witnesses for the detainee's defense.
Seventh, the federal judge will inform the person that at their extradition hearing, the judge will determine: whether the person is charged with a crime for which there is a treaty or convention for extradition between the United States and the demanding country; whether the warrants and documents demanding the person's surrender are properly and legally authenticated; whether the commission of the crime alleged is established by probable cause.
Eighth, assuming the person sought to be extradited does not waive their right to an extradition hearing, the federal judge will either hold the hearing or grant a continuance. If a continuance is granted, the judge will determine whether or not to release the person on bond pending the hearing.
Ninth, if after the hearing the judge determines that the person should be extradited, the judge will commit the person to jail to await extradition, unless special circumstances justify the release of the person on bail.
Tenth, if the judge finds that the person is or is not extraditable, he or she will notify the U.S. Secretary of State that the extradition request has been denied.
Are you looking for the best international extradition attorney in Tampa Florida? Contact Attorney David C. Hardy.
Tampa Attorney David C. Hardy is an international extradition lawyer former prosecutor that now represents people in matters related to federal criminal offenses.
Attorney Hardy is Board Certified by the Florida Bar and the National Board of Trial Advocacy as an Expert in Criminal Trial Law. In the Federal Courts, he has handled a wide variety of cases including international extradition, drug trafficking, bank fraud, health care fraud, immigration offenses, aggravated identity theft, the misbranding of drugs, and firearms offenses. He has represented clients in Federal Trial and Appellate Courts in Florida, Texas, and Georgia. He has handled international extraditions from both Colombia and Guatemala.
Attorney Hardy has the knowledge, skills, and experience with federal and Florida extradition laws to guide you through this process and obtain the best possible results. Contact Attorney Hardy for a free consultation.