Dominican Republic orders arrest of French lawmaker
Santo Domingo: A judge in the Dominican Republic issued an arrest warrant Sunday for three French nationals, including a European Parliament lawmaker, accused of helping two French pilots flee after being convicted here on drug trafficking charges.
Attorney General, Francisco Dominguez Brito, said in a statement that warrants had been filed against French nationals Christophe Naudin, Pierre Malinowski and Aymeric Chauprade, a rightwing politician and member of the European Parliament.
The arrest warrants, issued by Judge Jose Alejandro Vargas, alleged that the trio helped organize the escape of two compatriots — Pascal Fauret and co-pilot Bruno Odos — following their convictions in August in the so-called “Air Cocaine” drug-trafficking case.
Fauret and Odos, along with two other men, last month were given 20-year prison sentences on drug-trafficking charges.
They were arrested in March 2013 as they were about to take off from the Dominican resort of Punta Cana on a privately hired jet with 26 suitcases containing 680 kilograms (1,500 pounds) of cocaine.
The four men were freed pending appeal and barred from leaving the Dominican Republic.
But the two of them — allegedly with assistance from the individuals named in Sunday’s arrest warrant — somehow slipped out of the country and returned to France, vowing to clear their names.
The pair reportedly traveled by boat to the Franco-Dutch island of Saint Martin before flying to Martinique and then on to France.
They were arrested earlier this month near the French city of Lyon.
Dominican Republic has issued an international arrest warrant for them but France has suggested that the men will not be extradited.
Nov 23, 2015
Category: DR News |