Jul 10, 2012
Congressman Chris Smith, chairman of The Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (U.S. Helsinki Commission) will hold a hearing Wednesday July 11 entitled “Justice in the International Extradition System: The Case of George Wright and Beyond” at 2 p.m. in Room 2203 of the Rayburn House Office Building
Smith will hold the hearing to examine international extradition norms and their impact on U.S. victims of international fugitives. The hearing will review factors that impede or prevent extradition of criminals to the United States, concerns the United States may have regarding extradition requests from other countries, and how the U.S. might work to advance justice in this process.
As a case study, the Commission will receive testimony regarding George Wright, who was convicted in 1963 of murdering Walter Patterson during an armed robbery – he is also sought as a prison escapee and for the 1972 hijacking of a passenger jet. Last year he was located in a village in Portugal, but in November a Portuguese court denied the United States’ request to have him extradited.
The following witnesses are scheduled to testify:
- Ann Patterson, daughter of Walter Patterson
- R. J. Gallagher, retired FBI
- Jonathan Winer, Senior Director, APCO Worldwide,
Washington, DC, and former U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for
International Law Enforcement