World News

Greek court extradites Syrian to U.S. over fake passports

ATHENS (Reuters) - Greece’s top court on Tuesday ordered the extradition of a Syrian man to the United States where he faces charges of producing fake passports and identity theft.

The United States had issued an international arrest warrant for the man, identified only as H.K.

U.S. judicial authorities said he had held meetings in Athens earlier this year with a U.S. secret service agent and had agreed to produce four fake passports in exchange for 10,000 euros. One of the meetings was recorded by the agent.

The Syrian man was arrested in July in Athens and has been in pre-trial detention in a high-security prison in the Greek capital, court officials and police said.

Greek authorities have also charged him with forgery and have accused him of helping immigrants enter and exit the country, which serves as the main gateway into the European Union for migrants from the Middle East and Africa.

According to court officials, the Syrian had argued that he would not have a fair trial if extradited. His lawyer also argued that he should not be tried in the United States for alleged offences he was accused of committing in Greece.

No further details on the case were immediately available.

Reporting Costantinos Georgizas; Writing by Renee Maltezou; Editing by Gareth Jones