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

15:03
Dynamo spotted by Steve Spencer

Fans of magician Dynamo were delighted by his latest trick: appearing to ‘levitate’ from The Shard near London Bridge.

Read more
22 minutes ago
Phil McFadden recieved money off his bill as an apology but declined Byron's offer to pay his whole bill [Photograph by Phil McFadden]

A man was shocked to find a metal ringpull in his order of onion rings at the London burger chain.

Read more
16:58
An 80-year-old man (not pictured in the library photo) has been arrested on suspicion of prostituting a child and supplying Class A drugs [Photograph by Wset10]

A 68-year-old man has today been arrested on suspicion of arranging the prostitution of a child under the age of 18 and supplying Class A drugs.

Read more

Quirky London

Quizzes

I'm only going to say this once: Stand. On. The. Right.

James Bond is Britain’s most famous secret agent, and the capital is its most famous city, so it makes sense that 007 would live and work here when he isn’t gallivanting around the world.

Read more
Can you find the animals hiding in London station names? (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

You may not realise it but there are animals hiding in stations across London? Play our quiz and see if you can you find them:

Read more
Can you guess the Tube station just from the outside? (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

How well do you know your Tube stations? Can you guess these Underground stops from the pictures taken outside them?

Read more