Prague - The Prague Municipal Court sanctioned today the extradition of Iranian Hosein Najeri to the United States where he faces a life sentence for participation in the kidnapping and brutal torture of a Californian pharmacist, but Justice Minister Helena Valkova will have the final say.
Najeri, 35, has three work days to appeal the verdict. He only said today he utterly disagrees with his extradition to the United States.
Judge Lubos Vrba said the court found nothing that would prevent Najeri´s extradition.
He said the decision is in line with the bilateral extradition treaty that Czechoslovakia signed with the United States back in 1925.
Vrba cited the facts that Najeri is not a Czech citizen, the crimes which he allegedly committed are punishable in both countries and that he cannot be sentenced to death if found guilty as key factors in the court´s decision-making.
As soon as today´s decision becomes valid, the court will send it to the Justice Ministry. Valkova can ask the Supreme Court for reappraisal of the verdict if she has doubts about it.
The United States has issued an international warrant for Najeri´s arrest over double kidnapping for ransom, torture, serious mutilation and entering.
The Czech equivalents of these crimes under the California criminal law are causing a serious bodily harm, blackmailing and forcible entry into house. They would carry a maximum of 12 years in prison in the Czech Republic.
Czech detectives caught the man last November at Prague´s Vaclav Havel Airport via which he attempted to get from Iran to Spain where his family stays.
FBI says Najeri together with another three perpetrators kidnapped the owner of a specialised pharmacy in California, which sells marijuana for medical purposes. The kidnappers took the pharmacist to the desert where they tortured him and amputated his penis in an attempt to force him into telling them where he hides his money.