Thursday, June 9, 2011

Brazil's Supreme Court ordered to release Battisti

The Supreme Court of Brazil has decided to release Cesare Battisti, after four years in prison, but has rejected an appeal from Italy's extradition request, but has continued its deliberations before making a final decision on Battisti destination. By six votes to three, judges have ruled that Italy does not have the legitimacy to challenge the decision of president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who did not grant the extradition of Cesare Battisti.

According to the six judges, Lula's decision is a matter of sovereignty and national jurisdiction of the executive and judicial. However, the nine judges of the Court have continued to consider whether the decision was consistent with the extradition treaty signed between Italy and Brazil in 1989.

"It's as if we were starting from scratch. The question is whether the president could refuse extradition," he told AFP Attorney Antonio Carlos Castro, former member of the Italian Red Brigades. In 2009, the Court had agreed Battisti's extradition, but after the controversy had left the final decision to Lula.

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