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Extradition process set to start against man arrested on US warrant

Νέος Διεθνής Αερολιμένας Λάρνακας

Police on Saturday said a 56-year-old professor arrested at Larnaca airport on February 16 due to an outstanding international arrest warrant, appeared before the Larnaca District Court on Friday.

The 56-year-old was arrested after a passport check found he was wanted in the United States for offences related to the export of weapons, conspiracy to commit serious crimes, false statements, as well as other related offences, which were committed between 2015 and 2023.

The 56-year-old was brought before the Larnaca District Court to initiate his extradition process.

Larnaca police spokesman Harris Hadjiyiassemis said the man was released until his next court hearing although he had to hand over his travel documents and his name was put on the stop list.

“The man will also need to sign a guarantor worthy of €250,000, be forced to sign twice a day at the Paphos central police station between 7-9 in the morning and 5-9 at night, and deposit €150,000 by bank check or by transfer from a foreign bank,” police added.

The next hearing has been set for April 3, to give time to execute the warrant for his arrest issued against him by US authorities.

As the 56-year-old is not able or willing to fulfil the conditions for his release, he remains in custody.

The Israeli professor has rubbished the charges against him.

Gal Luft claimed his arrest was part of a “politically motivated extradition request by the US” where he has been wanted for illegal export of arms to China and Libya.

“The US, claiming I’m an arms dealer. It would be funny if it weren’t tragic. I’ve never been an arms dealer,” Luft tweeted after his arrest.

He further claimed that his arrest is an effort by the Biden administration to silence him for cooperating with an investigation into the US president’s son’s business dealings.

 

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