US embassy cable - 02ABUJA1592

NIGERIA: GOVERNMENT EXPEDITES EXTRADITION CASE

Identifier: 02ABUJA1592
Wikileaks: View 02ABUJA1592 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Abuja
Created: 2002-05-23 17:11:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Tags: CJAN KCRM SNAR NI
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS ABUJA 001592 
 
SIPDIS 
 
 
SENSITIVE 
 
 
DEPT FOR INL, AF, AND L/LEI 
. 
DOJ FOR OIA--JASON CARTER 
 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: CJAN, KCRM, SNAR, NI 
SUBJECT: NIGERIA:  GOVERNMENT EXPEDITES EXTRADITION CASE 
 
 
REF: A. LAGOS 887 
     B. STATE 69699 
 
 
1.(SBU) A High Court judge on May 20 ruled in the 
Government's favor on the extradition case of Gabriel Umoh, a 
Nigerian national convicted by a U.S. court of financial 
fraud.  According to the Ministry of Justice prosecutor, the 
defense attorney argued before the court that the offense 
allegedly committed by Mr. Umoh is not an offense covered in 
the Extradition Treaty with the U.S.  Not persuaded by this 
argument, the judge ruled that Umoh should be extradited. 
 
 
2.(SBU) Umoh's attorney has 15 days to appeal the ruling to 
the Appellate Court.  The MOJ prosecutor is certain that Umoh 
will appeal, and predicts this will take two-three months if 
the judge is efficient and does not entertain repeated 
defense motions for postponement or shift in court venue. 
 
 
3.(SBU) Comment:  The otherwise sluggish Nigerian judicial 
system has showed remarkable pace in moving Umoh's 
extradition case in just four weeks; arguments closed on May 
13.  Nigeria's new Attorney General has told Ambassador Jeter 
that he considers extradition of fugitives from Nigeria back 
to the U.S. a priority.  It appears he helped select the 
court and may have lobbied the Chief Judge of the High Court 
for an honest and efficient judge to preside over this case. 
The challenge will be to ensure that similar efficiency and 
integrity continues in the Appellate Court. 
JETER 

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