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Australians arrested in drug raids to remain in custody

Prosecutors order the suspects’ provisional detention till August 24 pending investigations

Gulf News

Dubai: Five Australians suspects, who were arrested in Dubai for their involvement in last week’s high-profile international drug racket, will remain in provisional detention until August 24, Gulf News learnt on Sunday.

Dubai prosecutors are looking into the extradition requests lodged by the Australian authorities against five suspects.

The international drug raid involved Australia, the Netherlands and the UAE and began as an operation two years ago before the five suspects, including two Australian brothers, were arrested in Dubai.

Two organised gangs of 17, including the five suspects in Dubai, were arrested and the authorities seized 1.9 tonnes of narcotics in the raids, Dubai Police said last week.

“The extradition request and the five suspects were handed over to Dubai Public Prosecution (DPP) on August 10. Investigating prosecutors have ordered that the suspects remain in provisional detention for 15 days [since August 10] until August 24 … those requested for extradition will remain in provisional custody pending further investigations,” a senior prosecution source told Gulf News.

Enquiries conducted by Gulf News on Sunday have shown that the investigations in the case of the suspects involved in the extradition requests remain pending.

The case is being handled by Dubai Attorney General Essam Eisa Al Humaidan’s technical office.

According to the Criminal Procedures Law, extradition requests are usually investigated by prosecutors, who question the suspects before referring them to the Dubai Appeal Court to look into the extradition request lodged by any external legal authority.

Any suspect, facing an extradition request, has the right to appoint a lawyer to defend him or her.

Once the Appeal Court decides on whether or not a suspect could be extradited, the law further grants the suspect involved the right to appeal the appellate court’s decision before the Dubai Cassation Court within 30 days.