The Court of Appeal yesterday dismissed a bail request for a man wanted in Florida on drug smuggling charges that have been pending for almost two decades.
Sean Bruey, otherwise known as Shawn Saunders, who was willing last year to face trial voluntarily, renewed his fight against extradition on March 4.
He claimed after he withdrew his appeal to the Privy Council on December 18, 2018, authorities failed to surrender him to U.S. Marshals within the time specified by the Extradition Act.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs authorized Bruey’s handover days after his lawyer filed a constitutional motion alleging his extradition was voided because of the state’s failure to send him off within 75 days.
His lawyer, Osman Johnson, applied for bail in the Court of Appeal in July while the constitutional motion was still pending. However, the constitutional motion was denied on August 20.
The appellate tribunal said that the bail request needed to be refiled as the court was unable to hear bail applications at first instance.
Johnson was told he could either seek bail pending appeal of the decision on the constitutional motion, or appeal the refusal of bail by a Supreme Court judge.
Prosecutors allege that Bruey was an associate of drug kingpin Austin Knowles. They were arrested in 2002 with Nathaniel “Eyes” Knowles, Edson “E” Watson and Ian Bethel, after prosecutors unsealed an indictment against them.
Austin Knowles gave up his fight against extradition in 2018 and was sentenced to 12 years in prison this year. However, Knowles’ time was cut in half after he received credit for time served.