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Last Updated: Thursday, 31 January 2008, 13:42 GMT
Mexico court clears Portillo move
Former Guatemalan president Alfonso Portillo
Mr Portillo has said he cannot get a fair trial in Guatemala
Mexico's Supreme Court has ruled that the former president of Guatemala, Alfonso Portillo, can be extradited to his home country to face fraud charges.

Mr Portillo, in office from 2000 to 2004, is wanted over the disappearance of $15.7m (7.9m) earmarked for the defence ministry.

Mexico authorised his extradition in 2006, but Mr Portillo's defence team challenged the move in several courts.

Mr Portillo denies any wrongdoing and his lawyers say their fight will go on.

"There is no danger of extradition at this moment," said lawyer Marcos Castillejos, adding that there was still a long battle ahead.

The decision to allow the extradition now rests with the Mexican foreign ministry.

Mr Portillo fled Guatemala and went to Mexico after his four-year term ended and he lost his legal immunity.

Guatemala has made several attempts to have him extradited.



SEE ALSO
Mexico agrees Portillo's return
31 Oct 06 |  Americas
Guatemala seeks former president
01 Nov 05 |  Americas
Guatemala seeks ex-leader arrest
19 Jul 05 |  Americas
Guatemala politicians were racist
05 Apr 05 |  Americas
Country profile: Guatemala
11 Oct 05 |  Country profiles
Timeline: Guatemala
12 Mar 05 |  Country profiles

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