N.S. court orders extradition of man to face sexual assault charges in U.S.

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In its decision on Thursday, the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal refused to block the extradition of Robert Charles Carroll. (Robert Short/CBC - image credit)
In its decision on Thursday, the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal refused to block the extradition of Robert Charles Carroll. (Robert Short/CBC - image credit)

The Nova Scotia Court of Appeal is refusing to block the extradition of a Canadian man who is facing allegations of sexual assault in Minnesota.

Robert Charles Carroll, 58, has denied the allegations but agreed to be committed to stand trial. However, Carroll has fought the extradition order, claiming his health would be at undue risk from COVID-19.

Carroll lived in Minnesota for 10 years, returning to Canada in 2008. He's accused of sexually assaulting a teenage girl over a five-year period while living in the U.S.

The allegation was made in 2011. In 2015, American authorities formally requested Carroll's extradition.

Appeal Court blocked surrender order

Jody Wilson-Raybould, who was Canada's justice minister at the time, ordered his surrender. But at that time, the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal blocked the order and told the minister to take another look at Carroll's case.

The first time the court looked at the case, Carroll was concerned about Minnesota's sex offender program, which — if he was to be found guilty — could see him kept in custody even after he completed any jail sentence.

American authorities have since given their assurances that Carroll would not be subject to the program's provisions.

That's when Carroll changed the focus of his argument to his health concerns.

New decision from appeal panel

But in a decision released Thursday, the Court of Appeal said Justice Minister David Lametti had properly weighed those factors.

"The minister's reasons demonstrate a clear understanding of the relevant circumstances," Justice Duncan Beveridge wrote on behalf of the three-member appeal panel.

"They also exhibit an internally coherent and rational chain of analysis to an outcome that is justified by the facts and law. I am far from persuaded the minister's decision is legally flawed or unreasonable."

Beveridge also noted that while Carroll had voiced concerns about exposure to COVID-19, he did not tell the court whether he was vaccinated.

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