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U.S. calls bid to stop extradition of 2 to Japan 'meritless'

23 Comments
By ALANNA DURKIN RICHER

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Annnnd’ go:

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"The men's lawyers, who include former Trump White House attorney Ty Cobb"

it figures...

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was in Asia ..this case is getting bigger everyday, might be headed to the supreme court.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Meritless? There is no charge in Japan for helping someone skip bail. It is the Japanese plea to have them extradicted that is ‘meritless’.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

Here's what the court had to say (from Case 4:20-cv-11272-IT Document 44 Filed 08/07/20):

While Professor Cleary seeks to distinguish these cases [ED: Disadvantageous to his cause], see Ex. D – Suppl. William Cleary Decl. ¶ 4 [#38-15], he does not present any evidence, interpreting the Japanese language or interpreting case citations, that compels a finding that the statute cannot apply to assisting a person released on bail evade discovery by law enforcement.

...

In sum, after considering the statements made by Professor Cleary and the other evidence submitted by the parties, the court finds that Petitioners have not shown a high likelihood of success in their argument the Article 103 does not prohibit interfering with the Japanese criminal justice system by harboring Ghosn and enabling Ghosn to elude discovery by law enforcement and escape judgment from a Japanese court. Accordingly, the Magistrate Judge had reasonable grounds not to grant bail on this basis.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"Here, the United States has a strong interest in having extradition requests submitted by Japan (and other treaty partners) resolved promptly," Hassink wrote in court documents.

A bare-faced lie. Does this man not know that the US has repeatedly denied British requests for the CIA agent Anne Sacoolas to be extradited to the UK to face trial for killing 19 year old motorcyclist Harry Dunn by driving on the wrong side of the road?

18 ( +21 / -3 )

Alfie NoakesToday  12:38 pm JST

A bare-faced lie. Does this man not know that the US has repeatedly denied British requests for the CIA agent Anne Sacoolas to be extradited to the UK to face trial for killing 19 year old motorcyclist Harry Dunn by driving on the wrong side of the road?

That's a special case that involves arguable diplomatic immunity. The US (and most countries as well) have a very strong interest in safeguarding the sanctity of diplomatic immunity to guarantee their own diplomats performing diplomatic functions.

If you want a better analogy, you might try digging up cases where the US Armed Forces protected their own by spiriting them out of the host country where they are accused of crimes.

-15 ( +5 / -20 )

very strong interest in safeguarding the sanctity of diplomatic immunity to guarantee their own diplomats performing diplomatic functions.

Since when has driving on the wrong side of the road and killing a teenager been a diplomatic function?

12 ( +17 / -5 )

@cleo. You forgot the running away part, lying about being a CIA agent and showing no remorse.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Treachery begins at home. From the Foreign Office official “advising” that he could see nothing untoward about a quick repatriation, through to Raab’s deliberate evasions and transparent placing of the interests of the UK’s great and powerful friend over those of the citizens he ostensibly represents. Missing in action, the moral courage demanded of its servants, as exemplified by that call for someone to “speak for England”.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If they were in any way connected to the military they US would never hand them over.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Meritless? There is no charge in Japan for helping someone skip bail. It is the Japanese plea to have them extradicted that is ‘meritless’.

That has been the defence argument, but the judge is not required to consider it from that angle, and it is the judge's ruling, not what the defence says, that amounts to a weighing of the law. That went through in September: "The court finds that the charges for which extradition is sought are crimes pursuant to both Japanese and United States law and covered by the treaty".

The Taylors put themselves into this predicament by flying halfway round the world to break the law. Bringing out Japan's most high-profile suspect was asking for trouble, and trouble they got. Once they'd landed in Japan, they were legally exposed, and thereafter could have been arrested by Japanese, Turkish, or Lebanese authorities. They would (or should) have known that Japan and the US have an extradition treaty, and it is the US law enforcement authorities that brought them down, so that extradition treaty is now the centre of their universe.

While they may be wishing to have their extradition overturned, it is not plausible that they could have been ignorant of the existence of the treaty, or that they thought they were somehow legally immune and therefore outside its reach. In other words, they never had any right as US citizens to assume it wouldn't apply to them, and as they were able to carefully plan their operation, and to look at every angle, they really have no cause for complaint about finding themselves in its grasp.

Their last hope is high-level intervention, but in terms of presenting legal arguments to US judges, they're pretty screwed.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The Taylors have not denied helping Ghosn flee but insist they can't be extradited because they say what they are accused of isn't a crime under Japan law. They have asked the judge to rule that the Secretary of State's decision to surrender them to Japan violates the law.

Extradition is based on whether aiding and abetting a bail jumper is a crime under US Federal Law or the Laws of the State of Massachusetts . It is not based on whether it is a crime in the Extradition Treaty Partner Nation.

For example suppose a Muslim country demands a US citizen be extradited because he was guilty of drawing some cartoon of Allah. The US would be under no obligation to comply because it is not a crime in the US. But suppose the charge was theft or murder. Then the US would extradite him because those are crimes in the US.

The Taylor's defense has no merit exactly as DOS says. Their defense is exactly what they should present to a Court in Japan. Who knows, they might even get off.

The Taylors were not acting on behalf of the US government, they took the Ghosn job as paid civilian operators. $1.36 million. Hire a Tokyo lawyer already. They are wasting money fighting State.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

For example suppose a Muslim country demands a US citizen be extradited because he was guilty of drawing some cartoon of Allah. The US would be under no obligation to comply because it is not a crime in the US. But suppose the charge was theft or murder. Then the US would extradite him because those are crimes in the US.

That latter case makes sense assuming that the country demanding extradition also considered theft or murder to be crimes. But in this case a country is demanding extradition for something that is not a crime in that country. "What these people did isn't a crime where we are, but it is where you are, so extradite him to us!" makes no sense.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

ThonTaddeoToday 07:36 pm JST

So their defence alleges. The judge took both sides views and decided against the Taylors. For what it is worth, I agree, and even supplement something:

From the prosecution's summary (#41 in Docket):

According to Petitioners, their proposed expert is “neutral,” Public Prosecutor Naoki Watanabe is biased .... In fact, Petitioners have not explained how their expert is “neutral,” extradition courts properly rely on foreign prosecutor declarations...

His Declaration is blocked behind PACER but Expert William Cleary seems either un-neutral or un-expert despite his purported qualifications. In addition to all other flaws mentioned, Cleary does not seem to understand or have even wondered WHY bail jumping (by-itself) is not an offense in Japan, and WHY by-the-way the criminal law is carefully written such that the defendant is allowed to lie in court, and WHY the defendant is allowed to self-harbor.

The reason (and you can figure this out reading a textbook) is that exigibility for the defendant is low. It is considered too much to expect that the defendant does not lie, does not try running ... etc. And if he understands that fundamental reason, he can and should be able to predict such tender mercies will not be proferred to a hired hand.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

EXTRADITION !!.. EXTRADITION !!.. EXTRADITION !!..

Meritless? There is no charge in Japan for helping someone skip bail. It is the Japanese plea to have them extradicted that is ‘meritless’.

https://media1.tenor.com/images/573d869747f87583fed228f1abfea032/tenor.gif?itemid=5017964

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I am surprised that the State Department approved this request from Japan. Did deputy secretary Stephen Beigun consult with his bossMike Pompeo on this? An American national, ex navy seal, done tremendous work for American including rescuing kidnapped schildren, undercover FBI stint etc being extradited under these circumstances by his own country to face hostage justice system quite a shock. Meanwhile Japan refused to extradite Takata officials to Michigan to face criminal negligence charges.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

B. JayToday  05:19 am JST

being extradited under these circumstances by his own country to face hostage justice system quite a shock

At least in this case, there is no "Hostage justice system", beyond the fact that they cannot seriously claim they didn't do it, no system would allow this kind of criminal to be bailed.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Ghosn was held hostage for 108~130 days.

No charges, no trial date, no lawyer allowed...

Japan has no justice system to begin with.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

I am surprised that the State Department approved this request from Japan. Did deputy secretary Stephen Beigun consult with his bossMike Pompeo on this? An American national, ex navy seal, done tremendous work for American including rescuing kidnapped schildren, undercover FBI stint etc being extradited under these circumstances by his own country to face hostage justice system quite a shock. Meanwhile Japan refused to extradite Takata officials to Michigan to face criminal negligence charges.

Having served in the Navy he should be intimately familiar with the old US Navy saying:" One awshit cancels all attaboys." What I can't figure out is why these two didn't try to hide their identity? One would think a former Seal would be more savvy.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Since when has driving on the wrong side of the road and killing a teenager been a diplomatic function?

On a diplomatic passport you can literally commit murder and the host country cannot touch you. Arresting and imprisoning a card carrying diplomat is technically an act of war.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

A bare-faced lie. Does this man not know that the US has repeatedly denied British requests for the CIA agent Anne Sacoolas to be extradited to the UK to face trial for killing 19 year old motorcyclist Harry Dunn by driving on the wrong side of the road?

Every nation in the world has intelligence officers operating abroad in their embassies under what is called "diplomatic cover". They pose as one of many lower level diplomats in the embassy and generally the host nation knows which ones are spies and which ones are legitimate diplomats, or if they don't they generally figure it out soon enough. Being a diplomat gives them an excuse to talk to people, drive around and look at things through a trained pair of eyes. Nations don't attempt to kick these diplomats out because if they do, their own spies will be kicked out of the nation who's spy they just kicked out. That is why often nations who are at each others throats, like the US and China or the US and USSR, don't break diplomatic relations. They want their people in these nations seeing things in person, meeting their counterparts in the host government, sizing them up if you will, so they know what's happening there. Otherwise you are completely in the dark or relying on the diplomats and spies of another friendly nation to tell you what's going on, which is the US situation in North Korea and Iran. Not having your own people in foreign nations is a real handicap trying to understand what they are thinking and what is really going on.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

They're STILL on this? Why are they still beating a dead stick with a horse? Japan has no laws punishable for "jumping bail" let alone helping someone jump bail. Just........just chuck this one to the wind, Japan! Dude is long gone!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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