The High Court, on Thursday, dismissed an application by Guyanese, Troy Thomas, who is fighting extradition to the United States.
The Fixed Date Application (FDA) filed by Thomas to challenge the authority of Magistrate Sherdel Isaacs-Marcus, to commit him to US custody was heard by Justice Navindra Singh.
The US Department of Justice had requested Thomas be extradited there to stand trial on three criminal charges he allegedly committed in the State of New York.
In 2012, following the request for extradition, former Home Affairs Minister Clement Rohee issued an Authority to Proceed in accordance with the Fugitive Offenders Act (FOA); CAP 10:04 of the Laws of Guyana.
Thomas, also known as Marvin Williams, was ordered extradited on November 30, 2018 by Principal Magistrate Sherdel-Isaacs.
However, Thomas filed an application at the High Court, challenging the Magistrate’s authority to conduct the committal proceedings.
During a previous hearing, Justice Jo Ann Barlow ruled that the court indeed has jurisdiction on the matter. However, Thomas appealed that ruling.
On Thursday, Justice Singh ruled that the “Court fully agrees with the ruling of Justice Barlow and wholly adopts that ruling”.
In addition to the issue of jurisdiction/authority, Thomas had also denied that he is the Troy Thomas named in the warrant of arrest issued by the Supreme Court of New York.
The US murder suspect has maintained that he is Marvin Williams and argues that Justice Barlow also erroneously made the ruling that he was Troy Thomas.
Magistrate Isaacs-Marcus had ruled that she believed the murder suspect was Troy Thomas, a name he had answered to several times in Court.
The affidavit said that he is a Guyanese citizen and is entitled to protection under the Constitution of Guyana. The murder suspect said that he was arrested on March 14, 2018 at Liliendaal, Greater Georgetown, on a warrant issued by the Chief Magistrate.
He said that even then, he denied being Troy Thomas.
In his ruling, Justice Singh said the court finds that there was sufficient evidence before the court to determine that Thomas is indeed the person whom the warrant is for.
Justice Singh said based on the affidavits of eyewitnesses; there was more than sufficient evidence before the magistrate to commit Thomas, as she did, for the offence of murder in the second degree, an extraditable offence under section 5 of the FOA.
Thomas, who is currently in prison, is also challenging the authority of the State to hold him.
Since 2012, authorities in the United States had issued a wanted bulletin for the murder suspect.
Thomas is wanted in the US for the December 11, 2011 murder of 20-year-old Keith Frank, a Guyanese, which occurred in Richmond Hill, New York.
Frank, a father of one, who moved from Guyana to the US when he was 12, was shot and killed outside a Richmond Hill, New York party.
At that party he ran into some other men with whom he had an ongoing dispute.
Thomas is also wanted for two counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree. It was reported that he fled to Canada hours after Frank was killed.
Thomas, who says he is Williams, is also being represented by Senior Counsel Andrew Pollard, Attorneys Elisabeth Deane-Hughes, Kezia Williams, Prithima Kissoon, Jed Vasconcellos, Asa Shepherd-Stuart and Donna Bailey.
In the Fixed Date Application filed by Williams, the Commissioner of Police, Director of Public Prosecutions and the Attorney General have been jointly listed as respondents.
Until Minister of Public Security Khemraj Ramjattan signs off on the extradition, (Thomas) remains in custody of the State.
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