House of Lords Affirms Extradition of Suspected Al Qaeda Official for African Embassy Bombings

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Friday, February 1, 2002
Bruce Zagaris
On December 17, 2001, the Law Lords, the highest court of Britain, affirmed the extraditability of Khaled al Fawwaz, an alleged Al- Qaeda member who is charged with planning the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in East Africa. The principal issue in the House of Lords decision concerned whether the applicable provisions of the British Extradition law, paragraph 20 of Schedule 1 to the Extradition Act 1989, required that the person be ?accused or have been convicted of an extradition crime committed within the jurisdiction of any foreign state?. Defense counsel argued that the act for which extradition is requested must be done or the crimes committed must be done ?in? the requesting state (the U.S.)and that the U.K. must reject an extradition based on such extraterritorial jurisdiction. Defense counsel pointed out that Mr. Al-Fawwaz has never been to the U.S. and no acts in pursuit of the conspiracy occurred there.