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Danish court keeps Latvian national Misane in custody, decides to extradite her to South Africa
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    Danish court keeps Latvian national Misane in custody, decides to extradite her to South Africa

    RIGA, Feb 14 (LETA) - Danish regional court today decided to keep Latvian national Kristine Misane in custody. Misane is charges with abducting her own child in South Africa.

    The woman's representatives said that the decision, in fact, means that Misane will be extradited to South Africa on February 20.

    The Latvian public television reported today that Misane's lawyer today presented new evidence to court that would serve in her favor. The lawyer said that the punishment should be in measure to the offense, but in South Africa Misane might have to wait in prison for up to two year for the trial. The prosecutor said that Misane came up with new evidence late and is maliciously delaying court. The prosecutor claims that Misane should be extradited to South Africa as soon as possible.

    As Misane started a hunger strike, medics inspected her health condition, and decided that she can be transported. Misane could be extradited next week when South African convoy arrives to get her.

    Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics (New Unity) told LETA that the ministry has been working actively to provide all necessary assistance to Misane.

    The minister promises assistance also in the future, no matter how the events develop. He voiced hopes that there are still some legal mechanisms possible to prevent Misane's extradition, but he underscored that the decision of the Danish court should be respected.

    Asked about how this decision will affect mutual relations between the two countries, Rinkevics said that he is not happy about the decision of the Danish court, it has caused disappointment, but Latvia will continue cooperation with Denmark which i also Latvia's partner in the EU and NATO. "Of course, we see the public attitude, it can leave an impact on public diplomacy, but my work is to ensure support to Misane within the diplomatic framework," said the minister.

    Latvia's prosecutor's office does not comment on the decision of the Danish court as yet, but will consider possible further solution in this respect, said the office's spokeswoman Laura Majevska.

    According to Misane's representatives, the court today was deciding whether Misane could be released because she might already have served her sentence or should she be extradited to South Africa where she will face a trial and possibly a 15-year jail term for abducting her own child and other alleged offenses.

    The court was making a similar decision already last month. Initially the court decided to release Misane, but then Danish Prosecutor's Office filed a counter claim, and the Danish court still ruled to keep Misane in custody, even though the South African authorities did not take her over within 30 days as required. 

    According to Misane's representatives, the Danish prosecutor's office is currently "trying, by any means possible, to extradite Misane South Africa". With this in mind, Misane on February 8 started a hunger strike at her place of detention. Its purpose is to draw attention to the rights of European Union citizens, which prohibits extradition to third countries.

    The Danish prosecutor's office announced earlier that Misane will be extradited to South Africa on February 12, but extradition was later postponed to await today's court ruling.

    LETA also reported, Misane met a citizen of the South Africa in 2011 and they had a daughter four years later. However, conflicts began between the two parents, which were initially financially motivated. The man then unilaterally decided to end the relationship and began to abuse both Misane and the two minors in the family.

    Fearing for the safety and lives of herself and her children, in Misane returned to Latvia in May 2018. In December 2018, Misane went on a business trip through Copenhagen to Mozambique, but was detained while crossing the border because she was wanted by Interpol. South Africa had told Interpol that Misane was wanted for kidnapping a minor. Now the woman is facing a fifteen-year prison sentence in South Africa.

    • Published: 14.02.2020 19:15
    • Gatis Kristovskis, LETA
    • Karlis Arajs, LETA
    • © The given news may not be republished in any way or amount, or otherwise used by the mass media or Internet websites, without written permission of LETA. If this provision is not observed, the matter will be taken to court pursuant to the laws and regulations of the Republic of Latvia.
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