US extradited Orpington businessman Christopher Tappin due be released today or tomorrow

10:32 25 April 2012

Christopher Tappin

Christopher Tappin

Archant

US extradited Orpington businessman Christopher Tappin is expected to be bailed today or tomorrow.

His family have spoken of their relief at the American judge’s decision but his wife Elaine accused the British authorities of “abandoning” her husband.

The 64-year-old, of Larch Dene, has spent eight weeks in New Mexico’s Otero Prison but was bailed on Monday after submitting a $1million bond.

The former Kent County Golf Union president is accused of selling parts which the US claim he knew were to be used in Iranian missiles.

He denies all charges and says he was entrapped. If he is found guilty he faces up to 35 years in jail.

Mrs Tappin, his wife of 37 years, said: “We are so relieved at Chris’ release and are grateful for the judge’s humanity in granting him bail.

“Chris has been unnecessarily locked up for over eight weeks in the middle of the New Mexico desert, abandoned by the authorities in his own country, without even having had a chance to clear his name.”

Before his extradition, Mr Tappin told the Bromley Times it was the ‘fear of the unknown’ which he was most afraid of.

He added: “The extradition treaty with the US is one of the cruellest and unjust pieces of legislation the UK government has ever produced.”

He has previously appeared in US court in a prison jumpsuit and walking in shackles.

Mrs Tappin said the family plan to visit him soon. She added: “I would like to thank all those many people most of whom we do not know, who have written to us, to their MPs, to the Home Office, and spoken out about Chris’ ordeal.

“We truly hope this support can be channelled into forcing a change in the extradition laws.

“British citizens should not be packaged off thousands of miles away from home without having seen the evidence against them and before the country who seeks them is ready to go to trial to avoid prolonged periods of pre-trial incarceration. Extradition without these safeguards is, quite simply, a betrayal of justice.”

Latest Stories

Yesterday, 12:50
The man fell from the top floor penthouse above Barclays Bank in West Hampstead (Picture via Google StreetView)

A man who reportedly fell to his death from a penthouse in Hampstead while naked has been indentified as a Harley Street doctor who ran a Botox clinic.

Read more
Yesterday, 18:10
Police are advising members of the public not to approach John McClintock and contact officers immediately if they see him (Picture: Metropolitan Police)

Police are appealing for the public’s help in tracing a 26-year-old man who absconded from a bail hostel in Richmond yesterday.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:17
The Isufi family, from left back, mum Meri, daughter Ramela, dad Erion, son Richard and youngest son Clive (front)

A vast gathering of friends and neighbours stood outside the Barking home of a family torn apart by a car crash to pay their tributes to them today.

Read more

Quirky London

Quizzes

But which London?! [Photo courtesy of Basher Eyre]

You might know London like the back of your hand, but how well do you know the other Londons - and London landmarks - across the world?

Read more
The prize is glory (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

It used to be Manhattan that was famous for its majestic skyline, but now our fair city is catching up. Do you know your Shard from your Heron Tower?

Read more
Test your London musical knowledge with our album quiz (Images via Getty)

Does your music knowledge stretch from The Rolling Stones to Rudimental, Spandau Ballet to Siouxsie and the Banshees? If so then test it out with our London bands quiz:

Read more