U.S. Supreme Court Gives Green Light To Noriega’s Extradition To France

By Dialogo
March 23, 2010

By rejecting his last appeal, the United States Supreme Court cleared the way
Monday for the extradition of former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega to France,
where he is charged with money laundering.

In January, the U.S. high court denied a first appeal by Noriega to avoid
extradition, in a decision that he asked the court to reconsider.

On Monday, the nine Supreme Court justices rejected without comment his
second and last chance to avoid transfer to France.

His lawyer could not be reached for comment.

Noriega, who is seventy-five years old, was overthrown and captured by the
U.S. army during its military intervention in Panama in 1989.

The former dictator is in jail in Florida (in the southeastern United
States), where he was sentenced in 1992 to thirty years, but his sentence for drug
trafficking was reduced to seventeen years, ending in September 2008.

In France, he was sentenced to ten years on a variety of charges in 1999, but
French judicial authorities want to organize a new trial for money laundering.

Manuel Noriega was an ally of the United States during the Cold War and a
former informant of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).