Turkish court rejects Australia's request to extradite Islamic State recruiter

Lester Mason
July 22, 2018

The justice has rejected a request by Australians to extradite a citizen they think is a leading recruiter for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group, Australia's foreign minister said in a setback for Canberra's efforts to cite him at home on Friday July 20.

Prakash has been held in a maximum-security jail in Gaziantep, in southern Turkey, since he was captured in October 2016 trying to sneak across the border from Syria using fake identity papers, the report said.

The decision not to extradite Prakash will come as a shock to Australian authorities.

Senior Australian counter-terrorism officials stated he played a pivotal role in encouraging several terror plots in Australia as well as lone-wolf attack plans against the United States which landed him on a USA "kill list".

In May previous year, Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull said he expected Prakash to be extradited "within months".

It was a very short hearing today in the Kilis Criminal Court in southern Turkey, where prosecutors called on the court to agree with Australia in their request to extradite Neil Prakash to face trial here.

When asked for his response by the court, Prakash launched into an attack on the judge in a mix of English, Arabic and Turkish.

The former rapper from Melbourne had featured in IS videos, and has been linked to a failed Melbourne plot to behead a police officer, and another attack that saw two officers stabbed outside a Melbourne police station.

"Democracy is not legitimate".

A Melbourne court sentenced Besim in September 2016 to 10 years in prison for his attempt to commit an act of terrorism on Australian soil.

He's even been linked by the Federal Bureau of Investigation to a failed plot to attack the Statue of Liberty in NY; and he's the subject of an Australian arrest warrant for crimes including membership of a terrorist organisation advocating terrorism, providing support to Islamic State and incursions into foreign countries.

Unver said prosecution, which contended for Prakash's extradition, additionally had the privilege to appeal against the decision. She says there is a related case that will be heard when the court reconvenes.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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