National

Man says he’s fugitive’s twin,

demands to be released

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) — A man claiming to have been mistaken for his twin fugitive brother could either be extradited back to Georgia or released from a Miami jail next week.

The 63-year-old told authorities he is Jean Vernet Prado, not his twin Raul Eduardo Prado, The Augusta Chronicle reported. Raul Prado was serving a 25-year sentence for trafficking marijuana in 2007 until his escape May 7 from a work detail in Augusta, Georgia.

The man currently in custody was arrested the next day in Miami by a U.S. Marshal Regional Fugitive Task Force, but says he is not Raul Prado.

The man’s attorney, Jonathan Meltz, recently filed an opposition to extradition and request for release.

The motion states Jean Prado is “being held illegally without probable cause and in violation of his rights under both the Florida and U.S. Constitution.”

Meltz said that Jean Prado was using his brother’s identity because he doesn’t have his own papers here in the U.S. According to the motion, Jean and Raul Prado were both born in Havana, Cuba on April 18, 1955.

“If they prove his identity, then he will extradited back to Georgia. If they fail to prove that he is the fugitive, he should be released,” Meltz said.

Meltz said a hearing is scheduled next week.

Couple from New Mexico compound

face child abuse charges

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A sheriff in New Mexico says new child abuse charges that can carry a penalty of life in prison have been filed against the father and step-mother of a 3-year-old boy whose body was found at a ramshackle compound.

Taos County Sheriff Jerry Hogrefe announced Friday that Siraj Ibn Wahhaj and his wife by Muslim faith Jany Leveille have been charged with child abuse resulting in death and conspiracy to commit child abuse.

Siraj Ibn Wahhaj is the father of Abdul-ghani Wahhaj, whose remains were discovered inside an underground tunnel at a compound near the Colorado state line.

The defendants were among five adults and 11 children found living in squalor during an Aug. 3 raid on the compound.

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