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Cambodia Holds Frenchman as It Examines Extradition Laws

Giant panda Yuan Yuan sleeps next to her baby panda at the Taipei City Zoo, Taiwan.

Cambodia is still holding a French architect arrested at the behest of China earlier this month, while authorities examine national laws on extradition in what has become a complicated international case.

Patrick Devillers was arrested June 13 and has been linked to Gu Kailai, the jailed wife of former rising political star Bo Xilai who is accused of killing British businessman Neil Heywood.

It is unclear what charges Devillers faces, but government spokesman Phay Siphan said officials are considering whether he can be extradited. Cambodia has 60 days to decide, he said.

“The government is considering Cambodian law concerning extradition, as well as international law, where there are three concerned parties,” he said, in a case where Cambodia is holding a French national in connection with an alleged crime against a British victim on Chinese soil.

Foreign Minister Hor Namhong told reporters last week that Devillers would not be extradited to China or released to the French without sufficient evidence. Devillers is currently in the custody of the immigration police.

French officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment Monday.