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Dominican prosecutors interested in pursuing extradition of former nuncio

August 27, 2014

Following a Vatican announcement that Josef Wesolowski has lost his diplomatic immunity, prosecutors in the Dominican Republic have expressed interest in having the former papal nuncio extradited to face sex-abuse charges in the Caribbean nation.

Earlier this week Father Federico Lombardi, the director of the Vatican press office, revealed that the former archbishop-- who was laicized after a canonical trial in Rome-- will be subject to criminal prosecution once the appeals process for that canonical verdict has been concluded. Wesolowski, the Vatican spokesman said, is no longer protected by diplomatic immunity.

In the Dominican Republic, Francisco Dominguez Brito, the country's attorney general, expressed interest in the Vatican's decision. "At this time extradition is an option," he said, although he added that he would wait for the Vatican's final decision on the case.

The Vatican and the Dominican Republic do not have a formal extradition agreement, so the legal ramifications of the case remain unclear. The government of Poland, Wesolowski's native land, has also expressed interest in prosecuting the defrocked prelate.


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