By LAMECH JOHNSON
Tribune Staff Reporter
EXTRADITION proceedings will go forward for a man wanted in the United States on a drug charge, a magistrate ruled yesterday.
Magistrate Andrew Forbes said defence counsel for 53-year-old Roscoe Thompson had produced no evidence of irregularities concerning the dates and signatures on Foreign Affairs and Immigration Minister Fred Mitchell’s orders granting the court authority to proceed with the extradition hearing.
The magistrate also dismissed the argument that the statute of limitations had passed for the matter to proceed and ruled that the minister’s written directives were in compliance with the law.
However, he said, the matter would not likely be heard until next year given the number of cases on the court’s calendar.
Defence counsel Murrio Ducille and Elliot Lockhart, with prosecutor Anthony Delaney, agreed that April 7, 2015 was a convenient date for all parties to proceed with the matter.
The Tribune understands that the decision is to be appealed.
US authorities want the 53-year-old
resident of Wemyss Bight, Eleuthera, extradited to face a charge of conspiring to distribute five kilos of cocaine in that country.
The charge was filed against Thompson in September 2007 and the extradition request filed in January 2012.
Thompson, however, did not appear in Magistrates Court on the matter until May 2013 when he was granted $30,000 bail with two sureties, despite objections by the Crown that he was a flight risk.
Thompson remains on bail.
He was ordered to surrender his travel documents to the court and report to Rock Sound Police Station every Monday, Wednesday and Saturday before 6 pm until the conclusion of his matter.