When a person commits a crime, he or she will sometimes flee the area in an attempt to avoid facing the charges for that crime. The stories about this can be seen on reality television shows quite often. A person who is wanted for murder can’t be found by the jurisdiction that has the arrest warrant for murder. An update comes across later that says the person was caught in another state, or even another country, and was brought back to the original jurisdiction to face the music.
The process of bring a person back to the original jurisdiction to face criminal charges is called extradition. This process is governed by federal laws. It is possible for states to have laws that also govern extradition, as long as those laws don’t go against the federal laws.
Typically, if a person with a felony warrant is caught in another jurisdiction, the jurisdiction that catches the person will work to ensure that the arrest warrant is valid. Once that occurs, the arrest will be made. A series of court proceedings and other occurrences happen to ensure that everything is in order for the person to be handed over to the warrant-holding authority.
One thing that is important to note is that the jurisdiction that catches the person can’t analyze the evidence or circumstances of the original jurisdiction. The Supreme Court has listed four specific points that can be checked by the jurisdiction holding the person. These include whether the person is fugitive from justice, whether the documents are in order, whether the person the jurisdiction is holding is the person named in the request and whether the person has been charged with a crime.
If you are facing extradition, you should make sure that you know your rights. These can have an impact on how the case is handled, so be sure to consider your options carefully.
Source: FindLaw, “Extradition,” accessed Jan. 04, 2017