Choosing To Remain Positive

Is It Possible to Avoid Being Extradited for a Crime?

When you live in one state but are charged with a crime in another, the charging state can request you be relocated to it so you can be prosecuted. As you can imagine, this can be enormously disruptive to your life, and it's understandable you want to avoid being taken. Here are two options for defeating an extradition order:

1. Find Problems with the Extradition Order

For an extradition order to be effective, it must adhere to a certain standard. To be valid, the extradition order must

  • Be facially in order and accurate
  • Show the defendant was charged with a crime in an accusatory state
  • Prove the defendant is the named person on the documents
  • Show the defendant is classified as a fugitive

It should also be noted that a defendant doesn't have to submit to an extradition order if they are already serving a sentence for another crime. In this case, the accusatory state cannot take them until they have completed their time.

Otherwise, if the order fails any of the requirements, it can be used to force a defendant to relocate to the state that issued it. For instance, if the order is missing pages or contains inaccurate or false information, it can be rejected and the state won't be allowed to take the defendant until the order is fixed.

There are many ways an extradition order can be attacked, but you'll need the help of a criminal defense attorney to take advantage of those options. So, it's a good idea to hire a lawyer as soon as you learn you're being forcibly relocated.

2. Get the Charges Reduced

Any crime can be grounds for an extradition order, but a state is less likely to spend resources trying to relocate defendants for low-level offenses. If you can get the charges reduced to something less serious, the state may cancel the extradition order and give you a little more freedom to make court appearances on your own.

For instance, the accusatory state wants to charge you with drunk driving, which is typically a misdemeanor. However, your attorney reviews the evidence and sees that it doesn't support a drunk driving charge, and negotiates with the prosecutor to get it reduced to a minor traffic violation. The state may withdraw the extradition order and let you appear on your own recognizance.

Dealing with an extradition order is not something you want to do alone. Working with a local criminal defense attorney is your best option for defeating this problem, so contact a lawyer at the first opportunity for assistance.