Posted by Adam @ 3:30 pm on May 22nd 2007

Russian extradition shenanigans

Well, the UK has issued an extradition request in the Litvinenko case. The subject of the extradition request is Andrei Lugovi, a former KGB agent that met with Litvinenko and on whose path that day traces of Polonium-210 were later found.

There are legal niceties and so on, with any extradition request, but this statement, by a spokesman for the Russian general prosecution service, is pretty mind-boggling:

But the service’s spokesman added that a Russian citizen who had committed a crime in another country “should be prosecuted in Russia with evidence provided by the foreign state”.

If that were really true, why would anyone let Russian citizens into their country at all? If they commit a crime and you don’t catch them before they get out the country, they are to be prosecuted in Russia and you just provide the Russians with the evidence? I mean, sure, you can refuse to extradite people who you believe won’t get a fair trial, and for a few other reasons, but a blanket declaration that extradition, in fact, isn’t ever going to happen? That’s pretty whacked-out.


  1. Welcome to Putin World, where a Czar is born every minute.

    I wonder what Britain is going to do about this? If they’re going to take that stance on extradition, the logical response is, as you say, not to allow Russians into the country anymore.

    Either that or have a bunch of Liverpool fans trash Moscow during a UEFA cup match and then refuse to extradite them.

    Hard to see either course of action being pursued. My best guess at Blair’s reaction: a strongly worded letter of disapproval.

    Comment by Rojas — 5/22/2007 @ 4:00 pm

  2. It is a good question; I guess that it depends on whether the UK has formal extradition arrangements with Russia, which would appear to be breached if the quote is the official policy regarding extradition.

    Comment by Adam — 5/22/2007 @ 4:40 pm

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