Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Bout has *almost* slipped the charges

Read it and weep: The lower court ruling is in on extraditing Viktor Bout to the U.S.A. to face charges...
"The U.S. charges are not applicable under Thai law. This is a political case," said judge Jittakorn Wattanasin in delivering the verdict at Bangkok's Criminal Court.

"The FARC is fighting for a political cause and is not a criminal gang. Thailand does not recognise the FARC as a terrorist group."
Besides the obvious misapprehension on the part of the presiding judge as to the character of the FARC, His Honor seems to have overlooked the nature of the threat to civil aviation worldwide posed by anyone selling "700 to 800 surface-to-air missiles" on the black market.

There is still one last opportunity to land the fish. The Thai prosecutors can file an appeal up to 72 hours after the lower court rules, and that would bump the request to a higher court, but it almost requires that the prosecutors show that the lower court judge made a mistake or failed to address all the evidence presented in the extradition request.

Better make it a good try, fellows. The Russians already have the vodka on ice for the celebration party.

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