Accused smuggler seeks release
A Hong Kong resident who is in custody pending extradition to the United States in relation to the export of military parts and the smuggling of goods is seeking immediate release by the city's High Court.
Barrister Gerard McCoy SC told Mr Justice Alan Wright in the Court of First Instance yesterday that his client Chan Hok-shek had been unlawfully detained since his arrest in Hong Kong in August last year.
Chan is being sought by US authorities for allegedly violating the US' Arms Export Control Act.
He is wanted for offences concerning the export of military parts and the smuggling of goods believed to be military training equipment or components, including 10 aircraft indicators.
He is also accused of laundering two sums of money, US$25,000 and US$58,000.
US authorities allege the offences took place between 2006 and 2007.
Chan, who ran a business involving aircraft maintenance parts, was arrested in Hong Kong in August, and Magistrate Henry Mierczak granted the extradition order on October 14.
Yesterday, McCoy made an application for habeas corpus, saying prosecutors had failed in their duty to make frank and full disclosure in the extradition proceedings.
McCoy complained that the magistrate had not been informed by government counsel about the status of a key witness who had been deported from the US to Malaysia.
Deputy law officer Wayne Walsh of the city's Department of Justice's international law division argued, however, that the prosecution had not withheld information on the status of the witness.
Walsh said the magistrate had been informed that the US authorities had made arrangements to have the witness testify in the case.
The judge reserved his judgment.