Home Foreign US judge orders Peru’s ex-president to submit to extradition amid bribery case

US judge orders Peru’s ex-president to submit to extradition amid bribery case

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A United States judge on Wednesday ordered former Peruvian President, Alejandro Toledo to surrender this week ahead of an expected extradition to his home country on bribery charges.

The 77-year-old, who served as Peru’s president from 2001 until 2006, is wanted by Peruvian prosecutors investigating a scandal involving Brazilian construction conglomerate Odebrecht.

The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit had on Tuesday rejected Toledo’s most recent legal move to block the extradition Peru has sought since 2018.

On Wednesday, Judge Thomas Hixson of the Northern District of California ordered Toledo to surrender on Friday at a San Jose courthouse.

Toledo’s attorney “stated that he will not seek any further continuances from the Ninth Circuit or the Supreme Court”, Hixson said.

The ex-president, who holds a doctorate from Stanford University, is accused of taking millions of dollars from Odebrecht in exchange for favored treatment in bidding on public works.

Toledo, who could face a 20-year sentence if convicted in Peru, denies all charges.

He was initially detained in California in 2019, where he had taken up residence.

He was put under house arrest in 2020 and ordered to wear an electronic ankle monitor in the swanky Menlo Park area near Stanford.

Peruvian prosecutors say they have testimony from two people who claim Toledo received bribes from Odebrecht.

The firm acknowledged paying backhanders in Brazil and several other nations around Latin America in the so-called “Car Wash” scandal, which has so far seen dozens of politicians and business figures behind bars.

Four other former Peruvian presidents currently face corruption investigations. They are Ollanta Humala (who ruled from 2011-2016), Pedro Pablo Kuczynski (2016-2018), Martin Vizcarra (2018-2020), and Pedro Castillo (2021-2022).

Former President Alberto Fujimori (1990-2000) was convicted of corruption charges and is in prison. Another ex-president, Alan Garcia, died by suicide in 2019 as police were preparing to arrest him in the Odebrecht case.

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