Zentai’s defence says extradition not legal

March 10, 2009 by J-Wire
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Lawyers for Charles Zentai, an 87-yr-old Perth resident alleged to have been involved in the  murder of an 18-yr-old Jew in Budapest in 1944 have claimed in court today that any order to extradite him from Australia to Hungary would not be legal.

Grant Donaldson  SC was appealing in the Federal Court  a  decision made in a previous court hearing that there was no reason why extradition could not be applied. He said that decision was incorrect because the charge facing Zentai was not an offence on the date the alleged murder took place.

Zentai is alleged to have murdered Peter Balazs on November 8, 1944. But Donaldson told the court that the war crime  applied did not come become legislation until 1945 and was not applied retrospectively. Zentai has taken a lie-detector test which showed him to be innocent but results of such tests are not admissible evidence in Australian courts.

Zentai remains high in the list of war crime perpetrators for whom the Simon Wiesenthal Centre is demanding justice.

The Hungarian Government is yet to make its submission.

At the time of the murder, Balazs was living under the protection of the Swiss. He was recognised traveling on a tram without wearing the mandatory yellow Star of David and bundled back to army barracks where three men, one allegedly Zentai, allegedly killed him. J-Wire has a copy of the Swiss pass published below.


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