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NRI US surgeon Jayant Patel may be deported - “confidentially” approved.


Queensland , June 27,2007
Darshan Malhotra

NRI US surgeon Jayant Patel, who is facing charges multiple manslaughter in Australia, may be extradited from the US very soon, the process having being “confidentially” approved. This process will lead his arrest in Oregon, his home town in the US.

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Source: AAP Patel will receive fair trial: Beattie
By Drew Cratchley and Jessica Marszalek
June 27, 2007

FORMER Queensland surgeon Dr Jayant Patel will receive a fair trial if he is extradited from the United States, Queensland Premier Peter Beattie said today.

The Federal Government today refused to confirm reports it had given the official go-ahead for extradition proceedings to return Dr Patel to face trial in Australia.

While admitting he had been briefed on the case today, Mr Beattie also said he was unable to confirm the report.

Australian authorities want Dr Patel, who is living in the US state of Oregon, to face charges in Queensland relating to 17 deaths which occurred during his two years as director of surgery at Bundaberg Hospital.

"The Australian Government does not disclose whether it has made an extradition request,'' a spokesman for Federal Justice Minister David Johnston said today.

"It becomes public at the time of arrest or subsequent extradition proceedings.''

Both Prime Minister John Howard and Mr Beattie were choosing their words carefully today.

"We are keen that that man be brought to justice,'' Mr Howard said.

"We are also keen to ensure that the proper legal procedures are applied and that means that there is a requirement for disciplined comments by people in public positions, lest ill-disciplined comments are used in the legal exchanges.''

Mr Beattie said he understood Dr Patel's former patients were becoming frustrated with the extradition process.

"I know how difficult this is, how painful it has been for them,'' he said.

"But you don't, when you get into the final stages of this, that is the Federal Government making the appropriate applications, you don't want anything to jeopardise it.''

Mr Beattie also vehemently denied claims from a US surgeon that Dr Patel would never receive a fair trial if he was extradited to Australia.

Dr Vijay Mehta, the chief of surgery at VA Medical Centre, Temple, Texas, said he didn't know Dr Patel personally or professionally, but he had followed the case closely.

"You have tried Dr Patel in public and (the) media,'' he told ABC Radio.

"There has been no defending person so the amount of hype created in Australia is such that if (al-Qaeda leader) Osama Bin Laden can get a fair trial in America, Jayant Patel can get a fair trial in Australia.

"The way Premier Beattie has created the whole political circus out of that, all the politicians are too interested in this being a circus.''

Mr Beattie described Dr Mehta's claims as "unfortunate and untrue''.

"We have been very careful here that due process has gone ahead without any political interference,'' he said.

"I've been the most cautious I've ever been on any issue in the time that I've been premier because I want a due process.''

Mr Beattie said he had faith in Queensland's justice system and a jury could easily be found to judge the case fairly.


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