US asks Honduras to arrest, extradite ex-President Hernández

Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez answers questions from the Associated Press,

The United States formally requested the arrest and extradition of former President Juan Orlando Hernández less than three weeks after he left office, after years of speculation about his alleged links to drug traffickers.

Honduran security forces surrounded Hernández’s neighborhood Monday night and the Supreme Court of Justice scheduled an urgent meeting Tuesday to select a judge to handle the extradition request.

A standoff ensued. The specific charges Hernández faces were not released, but federal prosecutors in New York had previously named him a co-conspirator in a drug trafficking case, alleging that his political rise was fueled with drug profits.

Hernández has long denied any wrongdoing. Nicole Navas, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Department of Justice, declined to comment. In a video released by Hernández’s legal team, apparently from inside his home, attorney Félix Ávila said that everything would have to wait until a judge was selected.

“Meanwhile, it is understood that no arrest order exists.” $2 for 2 months Subscribe for unlimited access to our website, app, eEdition and more CLAIM OFFER However, at a police barrier to the neighborhood, Rasel Tomé, vice president of the newly elected National Congress, said that Hernández had to turn himself in or he would be arrested. Hernández released an audio recording via Twitter early Tuesday thanking those praying for him.

“It is not an easy moment,” he said. “I don’t desire it for anyone.” He said the National Police had already been informed by his lawyers that “I am ready and prepared to cooperate and go voluntarily … to able to face this situation and defend myself.”

Read more of this story

Visited 94 times, 1 visit(s) today

Comments are closed.