Warner’s extradition papers delivered to T&T

Port of Spain, Trinidad (Trinidad Express) — Official documentation requesting the extradition of Independent Liberal Party (ILP) leader and former FIFA vice-president Jack Warner has been delivered to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Sources told the Express that around midday yesterday the package was dropped off via courier and will be sent to Central Authority head Netram Kowlessar today.

The package, sources say, also gives detailed listings of the alleged offences against Warner, who is wanted on wire fraud, racketeering and money laundering charges.

Contacted yesterday evening, Attorney General Garvin Nicholas said he is unaware that the US Department of Justice had sent the necessary paperwork for the commencement of extradition proceedings.

“I am unaware of that,” Nicholas said.

Kowlessar said: “I don’t know. I wasn’t in office today (yesterday). I will check when I go in tomorrow (today).”

Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Dookeran when contacted also said he was unaware if any package had arrived.

Sources told the Express, that extradition proceedings ought to come through diplomatic channels and this would be through Foreign Affairs and then sent to the Central Authority.

It has been a month since a provisional warrant was issued for the arrest of Warner.

Warner is currently on $2.5 million bail after surrendering himself to Fraud Squad officers on May 27 after learning the warrant had been issued for his arrest.

He is being represented by a battery of attorneys, including Fyard Hosein SC, Nyree Alphonso, Rishi Dass and Anil Maharaj, while the State is being represented by Pamela Elder SC, attorneys Jagdeo Singh and Gerald Ramdeen.

Queens Counsel Alan Newman and James Lewis have also been retained by the State and will be appearing alongside the local team on July 9, when the matter next comes up for hearing.

Warner will next appear before Chief Magistrate Marcia Ayers-Caesar in the Port of Spain Court on July 9.

He is accused of accepting a $10 million bribe in exchange for helping South Africa secure the right to host the 2010 World Cup. Officials in South Africa have denied that the money was a bribe.

Warner has denied wrongdoing and claimed that the charges are part of a US “witchhunt” meant to punish him for his support of Qatar’s 2022 World Cup.

Sources told the Express that had the documentation not arrived by July 9, the matter would have been adjourned to a date on or before July 27, since the State was given 60 days to furnish documentation from the US regarding Warner’s extradition.

The 60 days took effect following the provisional warrant being served on Warner.

On June 3, Warner and other FIFA officials were placed on “red notice” by Interpol.

Former executive committee member Nicolas Leoz and corporate executives — Alejandro Burzaco, Hugo and Mariano Jinkis and Jose Margulies, also known as Jose Lazaro, were placed on the notices following a request by law enforcement officials in the United States.

The red notice was issued to all Interpol member countries and is geared towards seeking the location and arrest of wanted persons with a view to extradition or similar lawful action.

Essentially, this means if Warner decides to leave the jurisdiction of T&T and go to another country, law enforcement will be alerted upon his arrival.

With this red notice in effect, it also means that all flight manifestos, train stations, ports — air and sea — and other modes of transportation will be closely monitored.

According to international reports, Lazaro is under house arrest in Paraguay.

Local Interpol sources say the alert is normal when dealing with an investigation of this magnitude and with such high-profile individuals.

The Interpol “red notice” means those named risk arrest anywhere they travel.

Argentinians Burzaco and Hugo Jinkis are accused of paying more than $100 million in bribes for media and commercial rights to football tournaments; and Margulies, a Brazilian broadcast executive.

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