Extradition of Dutch war criminal Guus Kouwenhoven back on the cards

By Caryn Dolley•

In February 2020 the Cape Town Magistrates’ Court effectively discharged Guus Kouwenhoven from a legal process that meant he would not be extradited from South Africa to the Netherlands because crimes he was convicted of there were not committed in that country. The State has now successfully appealed this, meaning Kouwenhoven still faces extradition.

Dutch businessman Guus van Kouwenhoven looks on outside the Magistrates Court after his extradition court hearing in Cape Town, South Africa, 27 February 2018. (Photo: EPA-EFE/BRETON GEACH) Less

An extradition battle between Dutch war criminal Guus Kouwenhoven and prosecutors in South Africa has swung in their favour, with the Western Cape High Court setting aside a previous finding that he should not be sent to the Netherlands.

The ruling made on Wednesday likely presents a major legal stumbling block for Kouwenhoven, who has been based in South Africa for several years, and from where he has been fighting against extradition.

In February this year, the Cape Town Magistrates’ Court found in Kouwenhoven’s favour ruling that he could not be extradited because South Africa’s Extradition Act only allowed for someone to be extradited if the alleged offences were committed within the state wanting the extradition approved.

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