The Secretary of State to the Minister in Greece (Skinner)

No. 310

Sir: The Department has received your despatch No. 1106 of October 19, 1929,1 with which you enclose a translation of a note from the Greek Foreign Office1 suggesting two changes in the draft treaty of extradition which your Legation, under instructions from the Department, has heretofore presented to the Greek Government.2

With respect to the change suggested in Article IX of the draft treaty so as to provide for the payment by the surrendering government of the expenses of extradition proceedings, it may be said that the law of the United States contemplates the payment of such expenses by the demanding government. In this relation reference is made to the provisions of law found in Volume 32 of the Statutes at Large, at page 475, namely:

“All the fees and costs in extradition cases shall be paid out of the appropriations to defray the expenses of the judiciary, and the Attorney General shall certify to the Secretary of State the amounts to be paid to the United States on account of said fees and costs in extradition cases by the foreign government requesting the extradition, and the Secretary of State shall cause said amounts to be collected and transmitted to the Attorney General for deposit in the Treasury of the United States.”

It may be added that in no extradition treaty of the United States is it provided that the surrendering government shall defray the general expenses of the extradition proceeding and in view of the above quoted provisions of law and of the system of government obtaining in the United States which would render it impracticable for this Government to consent to any such arrangement, the Department finds it is unable to agree to the modification of Article IX of the draft treaty which is desired by the Greek Government. However, the Department is willing to go as far as may be possible toward meeting [Page 372] the desire of the Greek Government in this respect and therefore suggests that Article IX of the draft treaty be amended so as to read as follows:

“The appropriate legal officers of the country where the proceedings of extradition are had, shall assist the officers of the government demanding the extradition before the respective judges and magistrates, by every legal means within their power; and no claim other than for the board and lodging of a fugitive prior to his surrender, arising out of the arrest, detention, examination and surrender of fugitives under this treaty, shall be made against the government demanding the extradition; provided, however, that any officer or officers of the surrendering government giving assistance, who shall, in the usual course of their duty receive no salary or compensation other than specific fees for services performed, shall be entitled to receive from the government demanding the extradition the customary fees for the acts or services performed by them in the same manner and to the same amount as though such acts or services had been performed in ordinary criminal proceedings under the laws of the country of which they are officers.”

In submitting the proposed change to the Greek Government you will advise it that this represents the utmost limit of concession which the Government of the United States is in a position to make on the indicated point.

So far as concerns the request of the Greek Government for the omission from Article XI of the draft treaty of provisions contemplating the making by a diplomatic or consular officer of a complaint under oath in order to bring about the arrest of a fugitive, the Department authorizes you to state to the Foreign Office that it would be willing to amend the second paragraph of Article XI of the draft treaty so as to substitute for the last sentence thereof and also for the third paragraph of that Article, the following, which it would seem might well be made into a separate paragraph:

“The arrest of the fugitive shall be brought about in accordance with the laws of the respective countries, and if, after an examination, it shall be decided, according to the law and the evidence, that extradition is due pursuant to this treaty, the fugitive shall be surrendered in conformity to the forms of law prescribed in such cases.”

In connection with the foregoing statement which you may make to the Foreign Office, the Department desires you to suggest the addition to Article II of the draft treaty, between present paragraphs numbered respectively 23 and 24, the following crimes and offenses:

  • “24. Bribery.
  • 25. Crimes or offenses against the bankruptcy laws.
  • 26. Crimes or offenses against the laws for the suppression of the traffic in narcotics.”

[Page 373]

The inclusion in the treaty of these additional extraditable offenses or any of them would of course necessitate the renumbering of the last paragraph of Article II.

The Department hopes that the concessions which it has indicated its willingness to make to the desires of the Greek Government will result in the prompt conclusion of the negotiations and with respect to the additional extraditable offenses mentioned, informs you that while it would be glad to have any or all of these offenses included in the treaty it does not desire that the attempted inclusion of them should operate to delay the agreement upon the terms of the proposed treaty.

I am [etc.]

For the Secretary of State:
William R. Castle, Jr.
  1. Not printed.
  2. Not printed.
  3. The draft treaty was enclosed in Department’s instruction No. 103, December 31, 1924, not printed; for text of the treaty as signed, see p. 378.