Kashamu must face drug charges, US court rules.
A United States’ appeal court has upheld a ruling against a Nigerian senator, Buruji Kashamu, who is facing drug charges related to the hit TV show “Orange is the New Black.”
With the ruling, a report by the Washington Post said, the senator representing Ogun East Senatorial District, could be extradited to face trial in the US court.
Chicago prosecutors accused the senator of heading a heroin trafficking ring in the 1990s.
Kashamu had in April 2015 asked a district court to put a hold on his “abduction abroad by US authorities.”
But in its ruling on Monday, the US court of appeals dismissed the complaint and upheld the ruling of the lower court.
The court said the attempt by US agents to arrest Kashamu in coordination with Nigerian authorities could not be termed “an attempted abduction”.
Many of those indicted in the case had pleaded guilty but Kashamu had maintained that his dead brother was responsible for the crimes he was being accused of.
He insisted the 1998 indictment by a grand jury in Chicago for conspiracy to import and distribute heroin in the US was a case of mistaken identity, adding that the prosecutors really wanted a dead brother, who closely resembled him.
In an April 2015 filing, Kashamu asked a district court to prevent his “abduction abroad by the US authorities.”
The court dismissed the complaint, and the US Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the ruling Monday, the Washington Post reported on Thursday quoting the Associated Post.
It said the US agents’ attempt to arrest Kashamu in coordination with local authorities would not constitute “an attempted abduction.”
A dozen people long ago pleaded guilty in the case, including Piper Kerman, whose memoir was adapted for the Netflix show.
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency in May 2015 arrested Kashamu, then a senator-elect, in connection with the heroin deal.
He was placed under house arrest at his Lagos home. He sued the Nigerian court to prevent attempts to extradite him.
When asked to react to the US court’s decision, Kashamu said he was not the person the judge was referring to because two British courts had ordered his release after it found out that it was a case of mistaken identity.
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