ALMOST a month shy of a year since he was first arrested by Brazilian authorities, ex-leader and corruption accused, Michael Misick heads back to the TCI next Thursday, November 7.
According to sources close to the PNP party the date of his arrival is tentative as they continue to lobby to have him flown directly into the TCI on a private aircraft, rather than through the United States or its territory, Puerto Rico.
Information reaching the Weekly News also suggested that there is some worry as to whether or not the former Premier will be granted bail when he returns to the Islands.
Misick was detained in a Brazilian jail pending the outcome of extradition hearings, which concluded on Tuesday (October 29).
In his last statements to the media before his resignation, Attorney General, Huw Shepheard welcomed the court’s decision to extradite Misick as it is in the best interests of the TCI that allegations of wrongdoing are thoroughly investigated.
“Michael Misick’s lawyers vigorously opposed his extradition, but after hearing arguments on both sides the court was unanimous in its decision.
“Arrangements will be made to return him to the TCI as soon as possible. He faces trial in the TCI Supreme Court on a number of serious charges relating to corruption and maladministration in the TCI during his time in office,” the statement read.
Reacting to the news, Premier Rufus Ewing stated: “We believe in the rule of law, justice and fairness and upon the arrival of Hon Misick, we expect that he will receive a fair trial.
“As a former Premier and Member of Parliament, we also expect that he will be treated with the respect that is befitting of the offices that he has held.”
Meanwhile, Leader of the Opposition, Sharlene Cartwright Robinson observed that the country is headed towards a hard time.
“This is going to be a very difficult period, I am going to, as my role of Leader of the Opposition and my party as well, to as much as possible respect the course of justice.
“It is my prayer that we move through this period as quick as possible so that Turks and Caicos can begin to move on, heal and grow.
“We look forward to the return of the former Premier,” she told the media in an invited comment.
On January 28 this year the Special Investigation and Prosecution Team (SIPT) sent a request for Misick’s extradition to the Brazilian authorities.
This was done within the required 60 day time limit from when he was first arrested on December 7.
The arrest was carried out by the Brazilian Federal Police, acting on a provisional arrest warrant.
Misick was released, but subsequently re-arrested by Brazilian authorities on April 13 in Sao Paulo, on the authority of a Brazilian Supreme Court judgment.
He later challenged the grounds of his re-arrest, following his request for political asylum.
At the time he claimed that he is not and never will be a fugitive.
“I have applied for political asylum from another country and I am merely seeking protection from political persecution,” he said in a statement he later released. (DI)
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