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People v. Meschino

July 24, 2000

PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS,
PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
V.
ROBERT MESCHINO,
DEFENDANT-APPELLEE.



IN THE COURT OF APPEALS OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS Appeal from the Circuit Court of the 12th Judicial Circuit Will County, Illinois No. 99-MR-14 Honorable Kathleen Kallan Judge, Presiding.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Justice Lytton

Defendant Robert Meschino and his wife filed separate petitions for dissolution of marriage in Illinois and California, respectively. When defendant failed to return his daughter to California at the end of her summer visitation in Illinois, he was charged with child abduction in California. He refused to waive extradition proceedings and sought to be released from custody in Illinois. The trial court granted his request for a writ of habeas corpus, and the state appeals. We reverse and remand for further proceedings.

FACTS

Defendant's wife filed a petition for dissolution of marriage in California in 1995. In 1996, defendant moved to Illinois, and in 1998, he filed a petition for dissolution of marriage here. A month later, his wife obtained an ex parte custody order in California. Defendant filed a motion to dismiss the California custody order, which the Illinois trial court granted.

In January 1999, defendant was charged in California with child abduction for conduct that allegedly occurred on or about October 21, 1998, through on or about January 8, 1999. The felony criminal complaint alleged that defendant failed to return his daughter to her mother in California when the child's summer visitation with him in Illinois ended.

Defendant was subsequently taken into custody in Will County pursuant to a governor's warrant obtained by the State of California, and he refused to waive his right to extradition proceedings. He filed an application for a writ of habeas corpus seeking discharge from the governor's warrant. After a hearing, the trial court found that the State had failed to present sufficient evidence and released defendant from custody. The State filed a motion to reconsider, which was denied. The State appeals.

DISCUSSION

The State argues that the governor's warrant and its attachments satisfy the statutory extradition requirements; thus, the trial court should not have granted the writ of habeas corpus.

Two sections of the Uniform Criminal Extradition Act (Act) apply to this case. Section 3 lists the documents that must accompany a demand for any extradition case. 725 ILCS 225/3 (West 1998). Section 6 permits the extradition of persons who were not present in the demanding state at the time of the criminal act. 725 ILCS 225/6 (West 1998).

Section 3 of the Act requires that a demand for extradition be "accompanied by a copy of an indictment found or by information supported by affidavit in the state having jurisdiction of the crime, or by a copy of an affidavit made before a magistrate there, together with a copy of any warrant which was issued thereupon ***." 725 ILCS 225/3 (West 1998).

In the instant case, the governor's warrant was accompanied by: (1) an application for requisition by a district attorney in California and an affidavit; (2) a certified copy of the criminal complaint filed against defendant with affidavits attesting to a finding of probable cause; (3) a certified copy of a police report providing the facts underlying the finding of probable cause; (4) a certified copy of the arrest warrant in California; (5) declarations of the district attorney in California and an affidavit; (6) declarations of the investigator from the district attorney's office and affidavit; and (7) the certified photograph and fingerprints of defendant. These documents are sufficient to satisfy the form requirements of the statute.

Section 6 of the Act states:

"[t]he Governor of this State may also surrender, on demand of the Executive Authority of any other state, any person in this State charged in such other state in the manner provided in Section 3 with committing an act in this State, or in a third state, intentionally resulting in a crime in the state whose Executive Authority is making the demand." (Emphasis added.) 725 ILCS 225/6 (West 1998).

Citing section 6, the trial court required evidence from the state showing that defendant intended his conduct to result in the commission of a crime in California. Since the state could not do so, ...


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