Man To Be Extradited On 11 Year Old Charges


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Ramon Luevano, a Hammond homeowner and naturalized citizen, was ordered extradited recently on an 11-year-old Mexican arrest warrant for allegedly attempting to traffic 176 pounds of marijuana into the United States.

Luevano, 51, says he confessed to the trafficking in 1994 only after Mexican police twice hung him from a tree with a plastic bag tied around his head and drawn tight around his neck.

The 1995 warrant against Luevano sat dormant for 11 years. But just months before the Mexican statute of limitations for the trafficking was set to expire in June, the Mexican consulate asked the United States to arrest Luevano and extradite him to Colima.

Luevano's attorney, Assistant Federal Community Defender Kerry Connor, has said it is "baffling" why the Mexican government waited so long to ask for Luevano's extradition.

But U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul Cherry ruled Friday that there was enough evidence to show probable cause that Luevano was caught preparing to traffic marijuana into Chicago in 1994.

Luevano was present at the scene where Mexican authorities discovered two large fields of marijuana growing, and he described the trafficking operation to authorities and showed them four more sites where marijuana was growing, the extradition order states.

Luevano also gave the name of the person who had coordinated the trafficking, whom he had agreed to meet in Mexico and receive $8,000 from in exchange for the drug deal.

Although Luevano now describes the trip as a vacation, authorities said he had traveled to Mexico without his wife or children, the order states.

Newshawk: User - 420 Magazine
Source: Northwest Indiana News
Pubdate: 6 December 2006
Copyright: 2006 Northwest Indiana News
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