Extradition Process Nevada: Definition, Procedure, and Challenges
We all hear on the news when high-profile defendants are arrested in one state but charged with criminal activity in another state.
Extradition is the term used to describe the process by which police or federal law enforcement transfers an accused criminal defendant from one state to another.
Nevada police can arrest a fugitive from another that has made their way to Nevada and return them to the state they are facing charges in.
Extradition is a complex process and most people are unaware of what their rights are during the extradition process.
If you have been charged with a crime and are facing extradition you need to call an experienced criminal defense attorney.
Since extradition is so complex it should only be handled by an experienced defense team.
The Defenders can help you understand the laws regarding extradition and assist in defending your rights.
We are experienced in criminal defense and will work to ensure that you get the best outcome possible during this difficult time.
Call us today for a free consultation and we can discuss your options and how we may be able to help you with the extradition process.
What Is Extradition in Nevada?
Extradition from Nevada is the process where police arrest someone in Nevada and then surrender that person to another to face criminal charges.
Extradition to Nevada is the opposite process where a fugitive is arrested in another state and returned to Nevada to face criminal charges here.
These are the following individuals that can be extradited from Nevada to the state where their alleged criminal activity occurred:
- A defendant who commits an alleged crime in another state and flees to Nevada while the case is still pending, or
- People who escape jail in another state and make their way to Nevada, or
- A person who violates their bail in another state
- A person who violates parole or probation requirements in another state
- People who have a warrant out for their arrest and are unaware of that warrant. This happens when someone is pulled over for a traffic violation and the police run a wanted and warrant report.
Uniform Criminal Extradition Act (UCEA) is the set of laws and procedures governing extradition in most states, including Nevada where it is referred to in NRS 179.
Can Nevada Police Arrest People in Nevada for Crimes Committed in Other States?
The police in Nevada are obligated to arrest alleged criminals that have been charged with crimes in another state.
Both states must follow proper extradition procedures for extradition to take place legally.
The Clark County District Attorney’s “Q Cases Unit” handles all extradition cases in Las Vegas.
The Process of Extradition in Las Vegas
The home state of a demanding state (the state that the suspected criminal is wanted) sends Nevada (the asylum state or the state the fugitive is in at the time) an affidavit, judgment, or indictment that charges the suspect with a crime.
The Governor of Nevada issues a “Governor’s Warrant” for the suspect. The Nevada Police will have approximately 60 days to arrest the person.
Once the person is in police custody they have two choices:
- Wave a formal extradition hearing and agree to be transferred back to the home state to face the charges
- Deny the charges and demand an extradition hearing in front of a judge and protest returning to the home state to face charges
If a defendant waives their right to an extradition hearing and agrees to return to their home state, Nevada will usually dismiss fugitive charges.
When they return home, however, they may face additional criminal charges for being a fugitive from justice.
If the defendant wants to fight extradition and stay in Nevada they will have a court hearing that resembles a mini-trial.
The D.A. will argue the case for extradition while the defense team will argue against extradition.
Can Someone Facing Extradition From Nevada Be Released on Bail?
Usual suspects that are arrested in Nevada but have charges in another state and are facing extradition are held without bail pending the extradition hearing or their waving their right to extradition.
A defense team that is experienced with extradition cases may be able to convince a judge to release the suspect on bail or on their own recognizance depending on the charges against them or if they are a fugitive from justice or not.
Can a Suspected Fugitive Be Arrested in Nevada Without a Governor’s Warrant?
If the police believe the suspect is a fugitive from justice in another state or is facing felony charges in another state, they can be arrested by the police in Nevada.
How Long Can a Fugitive Be Held in Nevada Before Being Extradited to Another State?
The general rule is that a person may not be held for more than 30 days in Nevada.
If the suspect hasn’t been extradited to the other state to face charges the suspect may release the suspect barring unforeseen circumstances.
What Happens When a Suspected Fugitive From Another State Also Faces Unrelated Charges in Nevada?
If you are wanted in another state for criminal charges and are also facing charges in Nevada for unrelated criminal activity, the Governor of Nevada has to decide whether to surrender the person to the other state or to keep them in Nevada to face the criminal charges until the local case is resolved.
In some cases, this could depend on the type of charges the suspect is facing in each state and how serious they are and the penalties involved.
How Do You Fight Extradition From Nevada
Once a defendant is arrested for charges, they will face an extradition hearing if they choose to fight extradition to another state.
The extradition hearing in front of a judge is like a mini-trial; however, there is no burden of proof since guilt or innocence is not at issue.
There are two defenses that are used to fight extradition:
- The extradition paperwork like the Governor’s Warrant paperwork or the charging documents from the home state has flaws that make the extradition invalid and/ or
- The police arrested the wrong person. The defendant is not the person that the demanding or home state is looking for.
A defendant may also contest the legality of the arrest through a “writ of habeas corpus”.
This process is very complicated and should only be handled by an experienced defense team.
Extradition to Nevada
If you are a Nevada resident and facing charges in Nevada but get arrested in another state you may be extradited back to Nevada.
The process is the same either way. In this case, Nevada would be the home or demanding state, and the state you are in would be the asylum state.
Since extradition to Nevada is costly, only people facing serious felony charges will be extradited to Nevada.
Misdemeanors and lesser offenses will not be extradited.
Call The Defenders
Extradition is a complex process that has multiple layers when a person is facing extradition charges.
An experienced defense team will guide you through the extradition process, including fugitive arrest, extradition hearing, and even the possibility of bail.
Your defense team can advise you on whether you should waive your extradition hearing and accept the return to your home state or fight the extradition to stay in Nevada and have an extradition hearing.
Extradition is a costly and time-consuming process. If you have been arrested and in fear of being sent back to another state you need a Nevada-based lawyer who knows the laws and court system in Nevada.
The Defenders can represent you at the extradition hearing in Nevada and work with your legal team in the home state where you are facing the original charges.
Contact The Defenders today for a consultation if you have been arrested and charged with a crime in Nevada.