France told to hand over ETA member

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European Court of Justice orders France to hand ETA member to Spain in landmark ruling.

13 August 208

MADRID - In a landmark ruling, the European Court of Justice has told France to hand over an ETA member to Spain even though the statute of limitations for the crimes for which he is sought has expired under French law.

The decision resolves the fate of ETA member Ignacio Pedro Santesteban Goicoechea and sets a precedent that is likely to result in France handing over other terrorists sought by Spain for crimes committed decades ago.

Goicoechea is wanted in Spain on charges of arms and explosives possession, use of a stolen vehicle and membership of a terrorist organisation stemming from activities he carried out for ETA in February and March 1993.

Goicoechea had completed a prison sentence in France and was being held in preventive custody pending the European Court's ruling. He is now expected to be extradited to Spain.

[El Pais / Manuel Altozano / Expatica]

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