The Kempton Park Magistrate’s Court ruled on Monday that former Mozambican finance minister Manuel Chang should be extradited to the United States due to corruption allegations. However, the ex-official has 15 days to appeal the decision.
Chang, 63, who has been held in SA custody since December after the country received a warrant from the US prosecution. He was allegedly involved in a $2bn loan scandal and participated in several fraudulent transactions that took place in New York City.
According to Magistrate William Schutte, “there is sufficient evidence that Manuel Chang has committed the crimes” so the court sees no obstacles in his handover.
While the US was laying charges against Chang he was also wanted in his homeland. The former minister himself has even urged the court to extradite him to Mozambique as he would have better prospects of bail and a fair trial there. Despite that, the decision was made in America’s favour due to a number of reasons including SA-US extradition treaty signed in 1999.