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Trumbull prosecutor to Obama: Be concerned

Published: Tue, April 17, 2012 @ 8:45 p.m.

Trumbull prosecutor to Obama: Be concerned


Trumbull County Prosecutor Dennis Watkins again has petitioned to the highest possible level — President Barack Obama — in attempt to have suspected murderess Claudia Hoerig extradited from Brazil.

In a Tuesday letter, he lambasts the president for signing an executive order that will increase Brazilian visas to America.

“This should be of concern to you,” Watkins wrote. “Because by allowing possibly tens of thousands of new Brazilian nationals to visit the United States each year, the likelihood that further harm could come to Americans only increases.”

Authorities accuse Claudia Hoerig of killing her husband Karl Hoerig, a pilot for the U.S. Air Force Reserve and Southwest Airlines, in 2007 in their Newton Falls home.

Watkins in the letter said he has written to Obama in the past, providing an outline of the case facts.

Brazil has refused to extradite her to the United States to stand trial because its 1988 amendment to its constitution prohibits the extradition of naturals, such as Claudia Hoerig.

The amendment, Watkins wrote, has allowed several Brazilian natives to commit crimes in the United States only to have Brazil provide them a haven from being tried.

The letter comes on the heels of Obama’s visit to Colombia for the Summit of the Americas.

There, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff urged the United States to invest more into the Brazilian economy.

“With all due respect Mr. President, Brazil’s economy, which is the sixth largest in the world, is booming and it may need or believe it needs our money, but we first need justice,” Watkins said.

He goes on to write that Obama has placed the “extradition deadlock on the back burner” after signing in January the executive order promoting tourism between Brazil and the United States.

The executive order, according to Watkins’ letter, would increase visa applications from Brazil by 40 percent.

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