Court suspends extradition of church leaders

Associated Press/October 14, 2008

Brasilia, Brazil - Brazil says it has temporarily suspended its request for the U.S. to extradite two leaders of an evangelical church to face money laundering charges.

A Supreme Court statement issued late Monday says that the extradition request for Estevam Hernandes Filho and his wife Sonia Haddad Moraes

Hernandes was suspended to give judges time to analyze a defense appeal. The couple's attorneys say money laundering is not covered by the Brazil-U.S. extradition treaty.

The couple was arrested in January of last year after arriving in Miami with US$56,467 while claiming to carry only US$10,000. They pleaded guilty and have since completed a 10-month sentence.

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