Krejcir extradition hearing delayed

Czech fugitive Radovan Krejcir’s extradition case was again postponed in the Kempton Park Magistrates’ Court, his lawyer said.

Eddie Classen said today the matter would return to court on December 9, when Magistrate William Schutte would assess progress made in Krejcir’s bid for asylum, currently with the Refugee Appeal Board.

On August 29, Schutte said he would make his decision on September 12 on whether or not Krejcir’s bid to postpone the start of the state’s extradition hearing would be granted.

His lawyer argued then that the National Prosecuting Authority’s call to begin the extradition hearing should be delayed, pending the outcome of Krejcir’s appeal of his refugee status.

He argued that an extradition hearing could be rendered futile by a positive outcome at the Refugee Appeal Board, granting his client permanent asylum.

Krejcir believed an appeal against the rejection of his bid for refugee status would succeed, as there were “very strong” prospects of success in the case before the board.

He started a process to appeal against the rejection in February 2008 after he was arrested on arrival in South Africa on April 21 2007.

According to Krejcir, he and his family made their way to South Africa after he fell out of favour with a Czech politician after giving him a R20 million loan to fund his campaign to become prime minister.

Krejcir was sentenced in the Czech Republic last year after being convicted in absentia of money laundering. He would face an 11-year sentence if extradited.

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