Alleged Mossad agent may appeal extradition over Dubai hit
Poland agreed Wednesday to extradite to Germany Israeli man suspected of involvement in January assassination of Hamas official.
The defense team representing an alleged Israeli Mossad agent suspected of involvement in the assassination of a top Hamas official in Dubai, may appeal Poland's decision to extradite him to Germany.
Israel had asked Poland not to comply with the German extradition request, but a Warsaw court ruled in favor of the move on Wednesday.
Warsaw regional court Judge Tomasz Calkiewicz said the suspect, whose passport identified him as Uri Brodsky, would be extradited on suspicion of forgery and not on espionage charges, noting that spying against Germany is not a crime in Poland.
Brodksy's lawyer, Anna Mika-Kopec, said Thursday that her client would decided whether to appeal the extradition after viewing the court documents translated into Hebrew. The defense team was given three days to appeal the decision.
Mika-Kopec said that no Israeli representative had been present for the Warsaw proceedings. When asked by Army Radio who had employed her client, she declined to respond. She also would not say why her client refused to identify himself publicly and said she did not know what he did for a living.
Brodsky is not suspected of direct involvement in the January assassination of Hamas official Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, but rather of the less serious charges of working for an espionage agency and of forging documents.
The exact nature of the charges has not been decided.
Brodsky was arrested on June 4 at Warsaw's international airport, where he had hoped to take a flight to Tel Aviv, on the basis of a German arrest warrant. The warrant specified that he was suspected of working for the Mossad and of providing logistical support for the assassination by forging German documents.
Asked on Wednesday whether the incident would harm his country's ties with Israel, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said: "The issue will be handled according to the law, and not according to the interests of our foreign relations."
Brodsky was escorted into court Wednesday by masked officers from Poland's anti-terror unit carrying machine guns. He pulled the hood of his jacket tightly over his head and covered his face with his hands, hunching slightly as he entered the courtroom.
The German prosecutors, based in the southwestern city of Karlsruhe, declined Wednesday to comment on the case directly and said they were waiting until the extradition order went into effect before issuing comments.
"The court has decided to hand over Uri Brodsky to German authorities for judicial procedures there," Calkiewicz said. "The court did not decide whether Brodsky committed the crime for which he is under investigation; the court only checked whether the extradition request fulfills the formal requirements and whether the suspect is correctly identified."
"My client can be handed over to German judicial authorities within the framework of judicial procedures over the following matters: falsification of documents and using false documents," Brodsky's lawyer Krzysztof Stepinski told reporters after the closed-door session. "But the court did not take into consideration the German extradition request over participation in activities for foreign spy services."
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