PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad, Apr. 28, 2006 – U.S. officials want the Trinidad nationals accused of kidnapping and killing naturalized U.S. citizen and former Army veteran, Balram Maharaj, extradited.
This week, a grand jury in the District of Columbia handed down indictments for four of the 10 who prosecutors allege, killed Maharaj, Trinidad media reports state. They all face extradition on conspiracy to engage in hostage taking and hostage taking under Taking of Hostages Act of 1993. The Extradition of the Commonwealth and Foreign Territories Act, which was passed in T&T 1995 and amended in 2004, makes the offence extraditable.
Senior Council for the State, Israel Khan, told the court yesterday that the goal is to have all the accused extradited to face charges before a U.S. court. He added that more US warrants are expected.
David West, head of the Central Authority Department, told the court that the grand jury in the District of Columbia in the United States met at 11 a.m. on Wednesday and the indictments were handed down.
Maharaj, 62, was abducted while visiting relatives at Chandy Lane in El Socorro. His body was found on January 8 at Grande Curacaye, Santa Cruz. He was a Vietnam war veteran.
The case was adjourned to May 5 after the accused appeared yesterday. The accused are Sgt Leon Nurse and Cpl Ricardo DeFour and accused Kevon de Merieux, David Suchit, Cpl Ricardo Stevenson, Maharaj’s former common-law wife Doreen Alexander-Durity, Zion Clarke, Kevin Nixon, Anderson Starker and brothers Kenneth and Wayne Pierre. (Hardbeatnews.com)