Honeymoon murder: Dewani loses bid to block extradition to SA

UK to send Dewani to S Africa for trial
London, Jan 31: A British Indian businessman on Friday lost his final bid to block his extradition to South Africa, where he is accused of murdering his Indo-Swedish wife while on their honeymoon in 2010.

Shrien Dewani can be extradited to South Africa to stand trial, UK's High Court ruled. Lawyers for the 33-year-old, who is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, had argued that he should not be sent to South Africa until he was fit to plead over the killing of his wife Anni in November 2010.

But judges ruled he can be extradited as long as the South African government pledges to return him to the UK in case he ultimately proved unfit to be tried.

The government has signalled it would give such an undertaking, the court heard. Shrien, who remains in a Bristol-based mental facility, has been fighting removal from the UK for over three years and has denied the allegation of plotting the killing of his 28-year-old wife on the outskirts of Cape Town.

The couple had been kidnapped at gunpoint as they drove through the Gugulethu township in a taxi in 2010. While Shrien was released unharmed, the next day the body of Anni was found in the car with injuries to her head and chest.

A panel of three High Court judges, headed by the Lord Chief Justice Lord Thomas, had ruled last October that Shrien's extradition case must be reopened to consider two key issues – his status as "an accused person" and whether it would be "unjust and oppressive" to extradite him "regardless of the prognosis" of his mental condition.

However, the ruling today means he can now be extradited and all avenues of appeal may now be exhausted.


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