Extradition is usually requested when the accused person fails to appear in court or when they violate the terms of their bond, probation, or parole in another state. The extradition process is specific, and states have to follow the proper procedure when executing it. Luckily, you have an option of either fighting it or cooperating.
A waiver involves relinquishing your right to an extradition hearing. People opt for this alternative for various reasons. A knowledgeable Seattle criminal justice attorney can explain the pros and cons of giving up your right to fight and ensure that you don’t regret your decision.
Why Do People Decide to Waive Extradition?
Many people wonder why anyone would waive extradition when they have the option of fighting it. Sometimes, accepting it is better than trying to fight it off.
Accused persons waive extradition for various reasons. You might decide to return to the demanding state willingly if:
- You want to get over with the whole thing, speed up the process, and go back to the charging state
- The prosecutor promised to be lenient if extradition was waived
The decision to waive extradition can be challenging to reach. You want to be sure that it is what is best in your situation and will be advantageous to you. If unsure about it, consider seeking the advice of an experienced criminal defense attorney in Seattle.
What are the Downsides of Waiving Extradition?
While a waiver of extradition has several advantages, it also has a set of disadvantages. So, before you give a written notice waiving the right to fight, ensure that you are also comfortable with the downsides.
For instance, you might not be eligible for bail once you waive extradition. As a result, some accused persons could spend several weeks in custody awaiting to be transported to the charging state. A knowledgeable criminal defense attorney in Seattle can explain this alternative’s negative possibilities for you to make an informed decision.
What is the Procedure for Waiving Extradition?
Once you are certain you want to consent to your return to the demanding state, you must do it in writing before a judge. An honorable court is supposed to appropriately instruct you regarding your rights to make sure that you consent intelligently and knowingly. A consent for extradition might not be valid if it was made under duress or threats. Instead, it should be voluntary and unconditional.
The consent should, after that, be served to the Governor to effectuate the transfer. Also, the judge should give an Order for your release from prison. You might be handed over to the agents of the charging state, along with a copy of the waiver. An experienced Washington State criminal defense attorney can tell you what to expect.
What Happens When I Arrive at the Demanding State?
Accused persons must go through the charging state’s criminal justice system. It is critical to understand the charges against you and retain a seasoned attorney to help gather evidence to defend you adequately. You might be advised to plead guilty or negotiate a plea bargain, depending on the circumstances.
If the prosecution charges are weak, the best approach might be to refute the claims and challenge their arguments. But if all the evidence points to you and the chances of getting a guilty verdict are high, it could be advisable to ask for lenience in exchange for a guilty plea. It is critical to fight for the best possible outcome in the charging state, just like you would in your home state.
What Kind of Attorney Do I Need When Thinking of Waiving Extradition?
If you are accused of an offense in another state, you might want a criminal defense attorney in Seattle with an in-depth understanding of the extradition laws. Such an attorney is in the best place to advise on the positive and negative implications of waiving extradition. So, before hiring a legal expert, ensure they are knowledgeable about interstate and international extraditions.
Working with an attorney that has maintained healthy contacts with lawyers in several other states is also a good idea. While your defense lawyer in Washington State helps with the extradition matters, you need another legal expert to help with the criminal accusations in the demanding state. Their knowledge of the respective state laws can give your case the best possible outcomes.
Which Laws Govern Waiver of Extradition?
The extradition process and your rights to fight or waive extradition are embedded in the constitution, federal, and state laws. And the clause in the constitution is found in Article IV, Section 2. Under Federal laws, extradition guidelines are found in 18 U.S.C § 3182. The Uniform Criminal Extradition Act (UCEA) is not mandatory; thus, not all states have adopted it.
And since federal laws are supreme, all the states have streamlined their laws on extradition to align with the Federal law. In Washington State, extradition guidelines are found in Title 10, Chapter 88 of its laws. The bit on waiving your rights to fight extradition is found in section 430. Other extradition procedures are found in sections 260 and 270.
Most experienced, seasoned criminal defense attorneys are well-conversant with every provision of the various laws and can use it to your advantage. They can ensure that the waiver works to your advantage if it is the best alternative in your situation.
Legal Guidance from a Professional Criminal Defense Representative
Waiving extradition is an excellent way to save time and resources because a hearing can take a bit of time and might use a lot of resources. However, it might not be the most appropriate alternative in all situations. Thus, it is advisable to always consult with a legal expert before signing away your right to fight.
You need a Washington State defense attorney that has been engaged in extradition procedures for a while. Our lawyers can walk the journey with you and offer valuable advice if you speak to us today.