Ecuadorian Ambassador Again Says Guaman Won't Be Extradited To Mass.

The ambassador of Ecuador has reaffirmed that the South American nation will not extradite to the United States a man who was sentenced in his native Ecuador to 25 years in prison for a double murder in Brockton last year.

Additionally, the ambassador has again requested that evidence held by Plymouth County authorities be shipped to Ecuador "in order to help guard against any potential appeal."

In a letter (PDF) addressed to Sen. John Kerry, Ambassador Nathalie Cely wrote:

... the Ecuadorian Constitution and extradition law do indeed prohibit the extradition of Ecuadorian nationals. Consequently, [Luis] Guaman cannot be extradited to the United States. However, Ecuador’s extradition law does allow judicial authorities to prosecute an Ecuadorian citizen in Ecuador for crimes committed outside the country. Accordingly, for over a year now, Ecuadorian judicial authorities have aggressively prosecuted this case using the evidence available to them.

Last week, again seeking extradition, Kerry sent Cely a letter expressing concern that the convicted killer "could serve as little as ten years of his sentence, and then would be set free."

In her letter, Cely said she has "conveyed [Kerry's] concerns to the Ecuadorian Attorney General and other judicial authorities" and assured the senator that "my government remains fully engaged on this matter — particularly because it involves the brutal murder of an Ecuadorian citizen and her U.S.-born son."

Guaman was sentenced to 25 years in prison for the beating deaths of Maria Avelina Palaguachi, 25, and her 2-year-old son in February 2011. In Massachusetts, a similar conviction would have resulted in life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.

"While I appreciate your disappointment about the decision to not extradite Mr. Guaman," Cely wrote to Kerry, "I hope that you will consider supporting my government’s effort to obtain the evidence requested from the Massachusetts judicial authorities so that we can ensure he remains incarcerated for his full sentence."

This program aired on May 18, 2012. The audio for this program is not available.

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Benjamin Swasey Digital Manager
Ben is WBUR's digital news manager.



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