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ECOWAS Court fixes 11th March for judgment in the case filed by Venezuelan challenging his detention

The ECOWAS Court has fixed 11th March 2021 for judgment in the case filed by Venezuelan, Mr. Alex Saab, challenging…

The ECOWAS Court has fixed 11th March 2021 for judgment in the case filed by Venezuelan, Mr. Alex Saab, challenging his detention by the government of the Republic of Cape Verde.In the suit No. ECW/CCJ/APP/43/20 filed by a Venezuelan detained by the government of the Republic of Cape Verde in response to an extradition request by the government of the United States, the Court fixed 11th March 2021 for judgment in the case filed by Venezuelan, Mr Alex Saab, challenging his detention.

The Applicant Alex Saab, a Venezuelan, who was detained during a refueling stopover of the aircraft in which he was travelling, initiated an application against the Government of Cape Verde challenging his detention pending extradition at the request of the United States of America.

Mr. Saab through his counsel Mr. Femi Falana, argued that as a special envoy on a diplomatic mission, he ought not to be arrested and detained by the Cape Verdean authorities.

The Respondent submitted that the arrest and detention of the Applicant pending his extradition was carried out based on the general principles of international judicial cooperation in criminal matters, in strict compliance with the provisions of Arts. 3 and 4 of Act No. 6/VIII/2011, of 29 August and that it is not in violation of Cape Verdean law or any international agreement, treaty or convention to which the country is a party.

The Respondent also averred that the Applicant did not meet the requirements qualifying him as a special envoy with the associated immunities.

The Court had in its Ruling delivered on 20th December 2020 ordered the Republic of Cape Verde to place the detained Applicant under permanent home detention in good conditions, including access to medical treatment and visits.

The Court also ordered that the Applicant should not be extradited pending the decision of the Court on the substantive matter.

A statement by the ECOWAS Court said that the matter was adjudicated by three member panel comprising Honourable Justices Edward Amoako Asante, Dupe Atoki and Januaria Moreira Costa.

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