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Oct 9, 2014

Sewell’s Attorney Applies for Leave to Appeal Extradition

Anthony Sylvestre

Gary Sewell has been behind bars since 2010 fighting an extradition request by the U.S. On July third, 2014, Justice Michelle Arana handed down a decision to extradite Sewell.  But through his attorney, Anthony Sylvestre, Sewell is appealing that decision. Following the denial of the application to the Supreme Court for a habeas corpus, Sylvestre today applied to the Supreme Court for a leave of appeal following his review of the extradition proceedings. According to Sylvestre, an error of law occurred in the principal offense, for which his client is wanted in the U.S. That offense of Operating a Continuous Criminal Enterprise, says Sylvestre, is not listed in the extradition treaty between Belize and the United States.


Anthony Sylvestre, Attorney for Gary Sewell

“Principally and importantly is that Mister Sewell’s request for extradition was based on several offenses and the chief magistrate had granted the order in relation to all the offenses. But in further research and review of the matter, it was unearthed that one of the offenses is an offense that cannot be regarded as an extraditable offense; that being the offense of operating a continuous criminal enterprise. For an offense to be an extraditable offense it must be an offense which is found in the schedule to the treaty, the United States of America-Belize Judicial Treaty or it must be an offense which is an offense in both countries. And so having looked at the treaty, looked at the offenses listed in the treaty and looked at the laws in Belize, it became apparent that the offense of operating a continuous criminal enterprise, it is not an offense in Belize. And since it is not an offense in Belize, it cannot be regarded as an extraditable offense and therefore Mister Sewell cannot be extradited for that offense. What is the importance for that? The importance of that is that it is the most serious or the gravest of the offenses for which he was wanted. It is an offense which carries some severe minimum mandatory penalties in the United States. So the issue which would now be raised and which would now be canvassed at this application for leave stage, is that whether a court in the circumstances whether it would be just or whether it would be an abuse of process to extradite a man when the principal offense for which he is clearly wanted—is an offense which is so serious and carries such grave penalty—is not an extraditable offense.”


According to Sylvestre, the case was adjourned to October sixteenth to allow the government time to reply to the submissions made. The hearing of the application is set for November tenth.

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1 Response for “Sewell’s Attorney Applies for Leave to Appeal Extradition”

  1. CEO says:

    I believe every criminal should face justice but the playing field is never level when it comes to the extradition of American Citizens. They commit crimes in Belize and run back to freedom in the US.

    So when ever they start to reciprocate when it comes to extradition then it will be ok for us to send our people to stand trial.

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