Updated 02:00 AM EDT, Fri, Jul 21, 2017
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Honduras Confirms US Request to Extradite Former VP Jaime Rosenthal

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Religious Leaders Rally For Immigrant Rights At Capitol
Honduran immigrant, Jorge Rivera of Dallas, Texas, gestures as he leads chants during an interfaith prayer service on the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol to protest current measures that criminalize clergy and social service providers who give aid to undocumented immigrants March 27, 2006 in Washington, DC. Thousands of immigration advocates and religious leaders rallied against an immigration reform bill that is before Congress. (Photo : (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images))

The government of Honduras confirmed that the United States has sent a request to extradite a former vice president, who has been accused of participating in money laundering activities.

Foreign Minister Arturo Corrales said in a Reuters report that the extradition request for 80-year-old Jaime Rosenthal was received before Christmas and noted that the courts will be the ones to decide if it will be granted or not.

Appeal Democtrat noted that the request will be given to Honduras' Supreme Court on Tuesday.

Last year, the wealthy Rosenthal family was accused of using their Grupo Continental corporation to run money laundering networks in Central America, Reuters mentioned.

It added that some of the members of the family have already been arrested for the charges, like Rosenthal's nephew Yankel, who also served as a minister of investment under the leadership of Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez.

Rosenthal's son, Yani Rosenthal, and lawyer Andres Acosta Garcia have also been charged with concealing drug trafficking and foreign bribery proceeds using bank accounts in the United States. The entire family has denied the allegations against them.

In an earlier statement, Rosenthal told Tico Times that they are confident that they will be cleared of the charges.

"We are sure that we will prevail in the trial because the accusations are false. We will fight very hard. And we hope the truth prevails with the help of God," he said.

Corrales mentioned with Appeal Democrat that the request for extradition is a bad news for their country.

"It's not a day of joy for Honduras, it's not even close to a day of joy for the Rosenthal family, we all regret and would prefer that it did not happen, but the extradition request is in," the foreign minister said in The Guardian report.

He added that the aging businessman, who served as vice president from 1986 to 1989, is already weak because of a serious illness. Corrales claimed that legal process is already underway for the charges against Rosenthal.

Meanwhile, Fox News Latino noted that the former Honduran leader could not be extradited until the investigation of his activities in his home country is completed, as per defense lawyer Marlon Duarte.

The legal counsel explained that as long as proceedings against him are pending, the extradition cannot commence.

The accused is expected to show up in court on Wednesday during a preliminary hearing, where he is set to give his side on the charges of tax fraud and forgery filed against him.

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