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October 22, 1993



The opinion of the court was delivered by: JAMES F. HOLDERMAN


JAMES F. HOLDERMAN, District Judge:

 The United States of America, by Michael J. Shepard, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois ("government"), brings this emergency motion for this court to reconsider the ruling of Magistrate Judge Joan H. Lefkow which granted the motion of respondent, Marc Rouvier ("Rouvier"), for release on bond pending extradition proceedings. The government's motion is granted. Rouvier is hereby ordered held without bond pending extradition proceedings.


 Rouvier is a citizen of France. According to the government of France, during the first six months of 1992, Rouvier, in his capacity as managing director of the S.A.R.L. Sovipro, negotiated the purchase of wine in bulk from nineteen societies dealing with wine producers in the county of Var, France. After receiving the wine, Rouvier paid the wine producers with bills of exchange drawn by the S.A.R.L. Bouffet, a company in Lezignan Corbieres, France, and endorsed by a man named Michel Bernard. The wine producers later found that the bills of exchange given to them by Rouvier were non-negotiable and, thus, worthless.

 On August 7, 1992, the managing directors of the wine societies demanded an explanation from Rouvier concerning the non-negotiable bills of exchange. Rouvier claimed that he, too, had been defrauded by the endorser of the bills, Michael Bernard, and gave the directors his word that he would resolve the situation by the following Monday (August 10, 1992). The night of August 7, 1992, Rouvier disappeared.

 On the following day, August 8, 1992, the managing directors of the societies lodged a complaint against Rouvier with the French authorities.

 On August 9, 1992, the day before Rouvier was supposed to rectify the matter of the worthless bills of exchange with the wine societies, he was admitted to the United States as a visitor. *fn2" The following facts relating to Rouvier's conduct in the United States are taken from the stipulated facts filed by the parties on October 21, 1993.

 On August 9, 1992, Rouvier purchased an American Airlines ticket to Las Vegas. (Stip. #6.) On September 8, 1992, Tammy Villalobos, an American citizen, obtained a license for her marriage to Rouvier in Zion, Illinois. (Stip. #8.) On September 19, 1992, Rouvier was married to Tammy Villalobos, a United States citizen, and established residence in the United States. (Stip. #10.) On October 5, 1992, Tammy Villalobos filed an application for an immediate relative visa for Rouvier on the basis of their marriage on September 19, 1992. (Stip. #11.) On October 30, 1992, the application for an immediate relative visa was approved. (Stip. #13.) On November 10, 1992, Rouvier filed an application for adjustment of immigration status to that of lawful permanent resident on a conditional basis. (Stip. #14.) The application included biographical information and fingerprints. (Id.) The biographical information stated that Rouvier was self-employed as a "distributor." (Id.) On December 2, 1992, the biographical information and fingerprints submitted by Rouvier were sent to various U.S. agencies, including the FBI, State Department, and the U.S. Embassy in France. Whether or not the U.S. Embassy contacted any French authorities is not known. (Stip. #16.) In December, 1992, Rouvier began working full-time as a translator for Systems Software Associates in Chicago, Illinois. (Stip. 17.) On February 4, 1993, Rouvier's status was adjusted to lawful permanent resident on a conditional basis, based on the marriage to Ms. Villalobos. (Stip. #18.)

 On August 10, 1993, French authorities charged Rouvier with fraud, forgery of commercial and bank documents, and use of forged documents, in violation of Articles 405 and 150 of the French Penal Code. The complaint charged that the amount of Rouvier's fraud was 13,371,121 francs. *fn3" On the same date, Laurence Godron, the French Magistrate at the County Court at Draguignan, France issued a warrant for Rouvier's arrest.

 Procedural History in United States

 On March 26, 1993, the French government sent a request through diplomatic channels seeking Rouvier's provisional arrest with a view toward extradition pursuant to the Extradition Convention between the United States and France of January 6, 1909, as supplemented, February 12, 1970; 22 UST 407, TIAS 7075 ("Treaty").

 On June 4, 1993, *fn4" based on the French government's request, and on federal law implementing such treaties, 18 U.S.C. § 3184 et seq., the United States filed a complaint and sought a warrant for Rouvier's provisional arrest. A warrant was issued by Magistrate Judge Elaine Bucklo on June 4, 1993.

 On October 13, 1993, Rouvier was arrested pursuant to the warrant issued by Judge Bucklo, and an initial appearance was held before Magistrate Judge Joan H. Lefkow on the same day. At the initial appearance, Rouvier was advised of the charges against him and his right to waive extradition.

 Pursuant to the Treaty and applicable federal law, the government requested that the hearing to determine Rouvier's extraditability be scheduled ten days after the expiration of the deadline established in the Treaty for the submission of supporting documents by the government of France. Under the Treaty, this deadline is 40 days after Rouvier's provisional arrest.

 Rouvier, by this counsel, Daniel G. Martin of the Federal Defender's office, requested release on bail pending the extradition hearing. The government opposed Rouvier's request, and Judge Lefkow scheduled a detention hearing in the case for October 14, 1993.

 Judge Lefkow heard proffers of evidence, received exhibits, and heard argument from both government and defense counsel. She then invited defense counsel to file a written brief in support of his motion, and continued the hearing to October 18, 1993.

 On October 18, 1993, Judge Lefkow ruled from the bench on Rouvier's motion. She ordered that Rouvier be released on $ 50,000 (ten percent cash) bond pending the extradition hearing. At the government's request, Judge Lefkow stayed her order through the end of the day in order to allow the government to decide whether to seek reconsideration of her ruling. On October 19, 1993, Judge Lefkow continued the stay of her order pending a decision by this court.

 This court has been called upon to decide this matter on an expedited basis based on a very limited record. As Judge Lefkow ruled from the bench, there is no written opinion by which this court can review her analysis and findings of fact. Further, given the expedited nature of the proceeding, no transcript has of yet been provided. The parties did prepare a formal stipulation of facts to aid the court in its review. Thus, this court ...

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