Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Govt wants drug suspect extradited to US

Ally Khatibu Haji, alias Shikuba

Ally Khatibu Haji, alias Shikuba 

By Rosina John @TheCitizenTz news@tz.nationmedia.com

Dar es Salaam. The government has asked a Dar es Salaam court to order extradition to the United States suspected drug kingpin Ally Khatibu Haji, alias Shikuba, and two other suspects to face drug trafficking charges.

Last year, the US government declared Shikuba, 47, among the world’s most notorious drug trafficker who smuggles multi-tonne shipments of heroin and cocaine to Africa, Asia, and North America via his East Africa-based drug trafficking organisation.

He has been in custody since February 2014 on suspicion of smuggling of 210 kilogrammes of heroin after former head of Anti-Drugs Unit (ADU) Godfrey Nzowa personally arrested him shortly before he was to have boarded a flight to South Africa.

He was immediately charged in Lindi Region with trafficking of the drugs seized in the region in February 2012.

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) formally asked the Tanzanian government last month to extradite Shikuba and co-suspects Mr Idd Salehe Mfuru and Mr Lwitiko Samson Adam over heroin and cocaine smuggling.

The US government believes the two have smuggled into the country huge quantity of heroin and cocaine

The Citizen has learnt that Mr Mfuru and Adam were arrested in Dar es Salaam Thursday last week in anticipation of filing the application for extradition.

Yesterday, Principal State Attorney Edwin Kakolaki assisted by Senior State Veronica Matikila informed the Kisutu Resident Magistrate’s Court that the trio are wanted in the US to answer charges of trafficking drugs.

The state lawyer told Principal Resident Magistrate Cyprian Mkeha the extradition request was made on the strength of the formal request by the minister for Constitution and Legal Affair under section 5(1) of the extradition Act. Under section 5 (1) of the Act, a representative or consular officer of any country can request the legal affairs minister for the surrender of a fugitive criminal suspected of being in Tanzania.

According to the act, the minister may require a magistrate to issue his warrant for the arrest and detention of the fugitive criminal.