Colombia OKs extraditing Makled to Venezuela

Colombia spurned a US extradition request last year for Walid Makled.

Last Updated: Apr 14, 2011, 09:47 AM IST

Bogota: Colombia`s interior minister has approved the extradition to Venezuela of a reputed drug kingpin who has publicly accused his home country`s ruling elite of deep involvement in cocaine trafficking.

Colombia spurned a US extradition request last year for Walid Makled. It decided to instead send him home to stand trial for drug trafficking and murder.

Critics of the decision say Makled will be silenced in Venezuela.

Makled alleges he paid USD 1 million a month in bribes to senior Venezuelan officials. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez calls Makled a liar.

Colombian Interior Minister German Vargas said on Wednesday it will take at least five days to extradite Makled, in order to give him a chance to appeal the decision.

Bureau Report