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Florida wins extradition case

Anti-terrorist legislation makes extradition of Danish woman to US for 1990s alleged drugs smuggling possible.

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A 41-year-old Danish woman can be extradited to the United States to face charges of alleged complicity in an Ecstasy-smuggling operation to Florida in the 1990s, a Danish court has determined.

The Eastern High Court in Lyngby near Copenhagen has overturned a lower court decision which declined a US extradition request in the case. The woman is the first Dane ever who may be extradited for trial to a non-EU country.

"She is deeply shaken at the turn in events, so that she is again facing extradition. This has been a major psychological stress for her," the woman's attorney Michael Juul Eriksen says.

According to US authorities, the woman, named by her initials CB, is charged with being one of the leaders of a smuggling operation which imported some 100,000 Ecstasy pills from the Netherlands to Florida at the end of the 1990s.

According to Florida prosecutors, the woman was the partner of the head of the operation and both helped to enlist smugglers, as well as money-laundering the proceeds from the sale of the drugs.

The woman denies the charges.

When US authorities eventually began to unravel the operation, the woman returned to Denmark - after having been told by an FBI agent that she was a suspect in the case. At the time of her return to Denmark, she could not be extradited back to the United States.

But when anti-terrorism laws were passed by Denmark's parliament in 2002, US prosecutors took the opportunities made possible by the new law to request her extradition.

The woman is now expected to appeal her case to the Danish Supreme Court.

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