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The Champion

September/October 2009 , Page 44 

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Evolving Extradition

By Linda Friedman Ramirez

Read more White-Collar Crime columns.

Extradition Defense in the 21st Century

Criminal defense attorneys will discover that extradition law issues have an ever-increasing relevance to their practice. More frequently, foreign nationals who have criminal charges pending abroad are found and arrested in the United States for purposes of extradition.

A magistrate judge handling an international extradition case has a great deal of discretion in the way in which an extradition hearing is conducted. This is partially due to the lack of guidance in the statutes, as well as the fact that there is no direct appellate review of the magistrate judge’s decision. Once the magistrate court has certified a defendant’s case for extradition, if the defendant seeks to prevent extradition, he must request both a stay of the magistrate judge’s order and habeas corpus relief.

Because there is no direct appellate review and the issue of admissible evidence is so ill-defined, a great deal may depend on the magistrate judge’s attitude toward the def

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