Extradite Indian citizen to US for drug trafficking: SC

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New Delhi, Dec 13 (UNI) The Supreme Court has cleared the decks for extradition of the owner of an event management company to the United States to face trial for drug trafficking in that country.

A bench comprising Justices S B Sinha and Harjeet Singh Bedi, yesterday dismissed the appeal of Sarabjit Rick Singh, challenging Delhi High Court judgment upholding the order of Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate New Delhi, recommending his extradition to Texas, US.

Singh was arrested on November 2002 pursuant to the request made by the government of US for his extradition to that country as he was facing allegations of conspiring in aiding and abetting the sale and supply of MDMA, a controlled substance and other offensive substances. He is said to be one of the members of a criminal organisation involved in drug trafficking and money laundering.

His company was also promoting clubs into organising cultural events and shows in various parts of US for a long time.

India has extradition treaty with US under the provisions of International Treaty vis-a-vis the Extradition Act, 1962.

An arrest warrant was issued by US District Court for southern district of Texas.

The petitioner challenged the order of the High Court on the ground that his extradition must have been recommended only on the basis of some evidence admissible under Indian Evidence Act and fundamental right to life guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constituiton of India was at stake.

The extradition Treaty between the two countries was entered into on July 21, 1999.

The apex court in its judgment noted ''Section 10 of the Act clearly provides that any exhibit or deposition which may be received in evidence need not be taken in the presence of the person against whom they are used or otherwise. It also contemplates the copies of such exhibits and depositions and official certificates of facts and judicial documents stating facts would, if dually authenticated be received as evidence.'' The court also noted that for the reasons aforementioned, '' we are of the opinion that no case has been made out for interference with the impugned judgment. The appeal is dismissed.'' UNI AKS/SC AE RP DB1814

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