A German court Wednesday called for the extradition to Costa Rica of Paul Watson, the founder of marine conservation group Sea Shepherd, as he had skipped bail and apparently left the country.
The higher regional court in Frankfurt said Watson’s lawyer had informed it that he had left Germany “for an unspecified destination” and that they had therefore decided to resume extradition proceedings against him.
Earlier this year, Costa Rica filed an extradition request on charges stemming from a high-seas confrontation over shark finning in 2002.
Watson, a Canadian national who leads the Sea Shepherd organisation noted for its muscular attacks on Japanese whalers, is accused of “putting a ship’s crew in danger”.
The 61-year-old, whom Sea Shepherd members affectionately call “the captain” — and who looks the part with a thick shock of white hair and beard, was arrested at Frankfurt airport in western Germany in May.
He was detained for a week before being released on bail but has not adhered to the terms of the bail since July 22, the court said.
“Since by fleeing, Watson has shown that he can not justify the trust placed in him, the extradition process has been restarted,” the court said.
In an interview with AFP after he was arrested, the activist vowed that his campaign would continue even if he were tried and jailed.
“They hope that by getting me out of the way, they’ll shut down our operations. They won’t,” Watson said.
“This is not about me. It is about our oceans and the ever-escalating threat of diminishment of the diversity of life in our seas. It is about the sharks, the whales, the seals, the sea turtles and the fish,” he said.
On a visit to Germany in May, Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla said Watson would have a fair trial if extradited to the Central American country.
Trump’s tumbling support among ‘the poorly educated’ may crush his 2020 prospects: report
When Donald Trump famously declared, “I love the poorly educated” during his 2016 campaign, it was obvious that he was taking a much more populist (or rather, pseudo-populist) approach than Republican presidential candidates were typically known for. And white males without college degrees continue to be a key part of the president’s base. But Washington Post columnist Aaron Blake, analyzing an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Monday, stresses that when Trump is up against a “generic 2020 Democrat,” he finds himself struggling with non-college educated white women.
Trump chief of staff Mick Mulvaney told Republican donors any recession will be ‘moderate and short’
President Donald Trump has spent the last week claiming that any talk of a recession is a conspiracy theory by the media and part of a leftist coup against him.
The message didn't seem to get to his chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, who told Republican donors this week that the recession will be a quick one.
Politico reported the comments Tuesday, saying that it was part of a Jackson, Wyoming fundraiser with White House aides Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, who are supposed to be "camping" with their family, according to her Instagram channel.
Former Defense Secretary warns: ISIS is back, and Trump can’t ‘pretend it’s not there’
On Tuesday's edition of CNN's "OutFront," former Defense Secretary and CIA head Leon Panetta warned that ISIS is gaining strength in the Middle East again — and that after all of President Donald Trump's boasts that he had utterly defeated the terrorist organization, now it is time for him to get serious.
"Roughly estimated 15,000 ISIS fighters in Iraq and Syria now," said host Kate Bolduan. "Secretary Pompeo saying the terror group is, in some ways, stronger than it was three or four years ago. How big of a concern should the news be for Americans?"
"It should be a very serious concern for the president of the United States and for our country," said Panetta. "Because his first responsibility is to protect our country. And we learned from 9/11, the fact that these terrorists have one fundamental aim, which is to attack the United States and attack countries in the West. And now what we're hearing is that ISIS is clearly re-mobilizing to the tune of almost is 15,000-18,000, that are mobilizing into secret cells, mobilizing into attack teams, conducting not only attacks but kidnappings and assassinations and bombings, as we saw in Afghanistan. So this is, in the end, a national security threat that the United States cannot simply stand back and pretend it's not there."