Man extradited to face sex assault charges

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A 30-year-old American man accused of sexually assaulting a minor on a cruise ship berthed in Bermuda agreed yesterday to be extradited to the United States to face charges.

The news came after the Mississippi resident, who cannot be named for legal reasons, appeared in Magistrates’ Court.

During the hearing, the defendant was informed of his legal rights and consented to extradition.

Magistrate Khamisi Tokunbo granted an extradition order drawn up by prosecutors and the man’s defence lawyer that will result in him being returned home in the next few days.

He will remain in Bermuda on the same bail conditions he was previously subject to until officers from the US fly to Bermuda to escort him home to stand trial.

The US national was charged at the end of last month by the Massachusetts federal court while he was still in Bermuda.

A statement released by the US Department of Justice at the time said the defendant was a passenger on the ship travelling from Boston to Bermuda and that the alleged assault happened while the vessel was berthed.

The child then reported the incident to ship security officers, who called in the Bermuda authorities.

Sexual abuse of a minor in America carries a sentence of up to 15 years in prison, with a minimum term of five years, up to a lifetime of supervised release and a maximum fine of $250,000.

It is The Royal Gazette’s policy not to allow comments on stories regarding criminal court cases. This is to prevent any statements being published that may jeopardise the outcome of that case.

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