Stockholm, 11 August 2022 (dpa/MIA) – Sweden has decided to extradite a Turkish citizen to his homeland, a month and a half after an agreement was reached in a dispute about NATO membership with Turkey.
The Swedish broadcaster SVT reported on Thursday that the man had been sentenced to 14 years in prison by a Turkish court for bank and credit card abuse in 2013 and 2016.
According to the report, the name of the man, who is around 35 years old, surfaced in Turkish media as one of the people President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan wants to see extradited.
The Swedish Ministry of Justice confirmed to dpa that the decision to extradite the man had been taken. Sweden’s Justice Minister Morgen Johansson described the case as an ordinary, routine matter.
The person in question is a Turkish citizen who was convicted of fraud in Turkey in 2013 and 2016. The extradition request was received in 2021.
The Supreme Court of Sweden had examined the matter and found that there was no obstacle to extradition to serve the sentence.
According to the SVT, this is the first known extradition case since the process for Sweden’s admission to the Western defence alliance NATO was initiated.
However, the man had already been in Swedish custody since late 2021 while awaiting the extradition decision, so it is unclear whether the case is related to the agreement reached between Turkey, Sweden and Finland at the end of June.
Sweden and Finland applied to join NATO after Russia launched its war on Ukraine in mid-May. Turkey initially blocked the start of the process, claiming that Finland and Sweden supported “terrorist organizations.”
At the end of June, the three countries signed a declaration of intent that addressed Turkey’s concerns. Turkey has yet to ratify NATO’s enlargement.