Ethiopian Plane Hijacker May Get Asylum, But Only after 30-Year Prison Term

Hailemedhin Abera Tegegn (Facebook)

International Business Times

By Johnlee Varghese

The co-pilot of Ethiopian Airlines flight ET702 who had hijacked his plane and got it to Switzerland, in a bid to claim political asylum in the country, may finally have his wish granted, though not exactly as he might have planned.

The Swiss government recently denied the extradition request from Ethiopian authorities, stating that the 30 year old co-pilot Hailemedhin Abera Tegegn will have to face criminal charges in the Swiss court, and hence he will be kept in the country.

“We have informed the Ethiopian authorities that criminal proceedings are currently open in Switzerland against the co-pilot. Therefore, the Federal Office of Justice refused the extradition request from the Ethiopians,” Folco Galli, Head of Communications, Federal Office of Justice (FOJ) told French news source Le Matin.

The report further stated that Tegegn would have have to face trial first for hijacking, and may even get sentenced for a prison term of 30 years.

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