US Court Deems Evidence Against Ex-Peruvian President Toledo 'Sufficient' for Extradition - Report

© REUTERS / HANDOUTPeru's former president Alejandro Toledo Manrique poses in a police booking photo at San Mateo County jail in Redwood City, California, U.S.
Peru's former president Alejandro Toledo Manrique poses in a police booking photo at San Mateo County jail in Redwood City, California, U.S. - Sputnik International, 1920, 28.09.2021
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The former president was apprehended in the US in the summer of 2019. His detention, according to recent statements from Peru, came in response to an extradition request submitted in March 2018.
A US federal judge ruled that the evidence of criminality in the extradition case against former Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo is "sufficient," effectively paving the way for his extradition on corruption allegations, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday.
Toledo is accused of accepting $20 million in bribes from the Brazilian construction firm Odebrecht SA between 2001 and 2006, while in office. He denies all of the allegations and claims that they are politically motivated.
US Magistrate Judge Thomas Hixson granted Peru's plea to return Toledo to his native country for trial. However, in extradition cases, the US State Department has the final authority.
“The court has heard and considered the evidence of criminality and deems it sufficient to sustain the charges of collusion and money laundering under the provisions of the extradition treaty between the United States of America and the Republic of Peru,” Hixson reportedly said in his ruling.
Peru had requested Toledo's extradition from the US State Department three years ago. The country has charged him with bribery, collusion, and money laundering in connection with a bribery scheme in exchange for preferential treatment in the bidding war for contracts to build the Peru-Brazil Southern Interoceanic Highway.
According to the case materials, Toledo claimed in court that Odebrecht paid payments to Josef Maiman, an Israeli businessman who purported to be acting on his behalf. Toledo's lawyers have argued that he should not be extradited because there is no "probable cause" that he committed crimes.
Toledo has been working as a visiting scholar at Stanford University, which is located near San Francisco, California. According to recent media reports, in 2019, he was arrested by US marshals at his residence in Menlo Park, California. During their search of the house, officials discovered a suitcase containing $40,000 in cash.
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