US District Judge Edwin Torres has acceded to a request by the defense representing Panamanian former President Ricardo Martinelli to delay for one day the next extradition hearing, which will thus be held in Miami on August 23.
Attorney Marcos Daniel Jiménez, who heads the legal team of the former president, requested to change the date so that special legal counsel Roberto J. Moreno can attend; the legal specialist cannot be present in Miami on August 22 due to unspecified reasons stated in the request.
Judge Torres, who must determine whether to legally extradite Martinelli to Panama to be tried for four charges of embezzlement and illegal wiretaps that occurred during his presidency, has acceded to such request, according to a court document.
Attorney Jiménez said in his request that they do so in "good faith" and without causing an "unnecessary delay."
According to the defense, Martinelli would be "harmed" if he could not rely on the presence of his Panama law specialist at the hearing.
Judge Torres also acceded this week to a request by Jiménez to transfer Martinelli from a federal prison in downtown Miami to another "low security" prison in the city outskirts, but there is no date to carry out the transfer.
The new Martinelli’s prison, arrested since June 12 and with two denials of his bail applications, will be the Federal Correctional Institution (FCI Miami), where the late Panamanian general Manuel Antonio Noriega was sent before his extradition to France.
US Marshals Corps Officers will carry out today the transfer of Martinelli.