Extradition Treaty between the United States and Belgium; District of Columbia Circuit affirms order which denied Extraditee's motion to dismiss the indictment

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Date: January-March 2017
From: International Law Update(Vol. 23, Issue 1)
Publisher: American Bar Association
Document Type: Article
Length: 1,399 words
Lexile Measure: 1510L

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Nizar Trabelsi was a Tunisian national convicted in Belgium for a variety of crimes, including attempting to destroy a military base. *1183

On April 7, 2006, while Trabelsi was serving his sentence in Belgium, a grand jury in the United States indicted him for various offenses. The indictment charged Trabelsi with four Counts: Count 1--conspiracy to kill United States nationals outside of the United States in violation of 18 U.S.C. [section][section] 2332(b)(2) and 1111(a); Count 2--conspiracy and attempt to use weapons of mass destruction against nationals of the United States while such nationals were outside of the United States, and against property used by the United States and a department and agency of the United States in violation of 18 U.S.C. [section][section] 2332a and 2; Count 3--conspiracy to provide material support and resources to a foreign terrorist organization, specifically al Qaeda, in violation of 18 U.S.C. [section] 2339B; and Court 4--providing material support and resources to a foreign terrorist organization, specifically al Qaeda, in violation of 18 U.S.C. [section][section] 2339B and 2.

The United States requested that Belgium extradite Trabelsi on April 4, 2008, attaching an affidavit from the Department of Justice describing the offenses, and their elements, for which the United States sought to prosecute him. Trabelsi challenged the extradition request in Belgium, arguing that his extradition would violate certain provisions of the Extradition Treaty. On November 19, 2008, the Court Chamber of the Court of First Instance of Nivelles held that the United States arrest warrant was enforceable, except as to the overt acts labeled numbers 23, 24, 25, and 26 in the indictment. The Court of Appeals of Brussels affirmed this decision on February 19, 2009. On June 24, 2009, the Belgian Court of Cassation affirmed the Court of Appeals. *1184

The District Court concluded that Trabelsi had standing to challenge his extradition and that it had jurisdiction to review his extradition. Using the analysis articulated in Blockburger, 284 U.S. 299, 52 S.Ct. 180, the District Court determined that Trabelsi was not charged with the same offenses in the indictment for which he was tried and...

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A549156116