Challenging INTERPOL Red Notices: What if we lose?

Estlund Law, P.A.

Red Notice subjects who are considering challenging their Red Notices have frequently exhausted all of their other options.  Their efforts to show investigating police officers that they are innocent have failed; they have been charged and improperly convicted despite mutliple law violations by government officials; and they have fled their countries due to a very real fear of further human rights violations upon incarceration.

For those people, a challenge to an INTERPOL Red Notice is often their last hope.  It is almost unbearable to think about the possibilitiy of yet another loss, but the question nonetheless arises, "What if we lose?"

The idea of an INTERPOL loss bears consideration for several reasons, not the least of which is that one is well advised to go into any adversarial situation fully apprised of every contingency.  When challenging a Red Notice, the following truths regarding a possible loss should be known:

1.  It is possible that, despite a proper challenge, you might be denied relief.  The process is indeed an uphill battle because the Red Notice is presumed to be valid once it is issued and that presumption must be overcome.  One's odds are increased greatly with proper preparation, and decreased greatly by poor preparation.

2.  Your challenge, whether successful or not, will educate Interpol.  The organization does not perform its own investigations, and the more challenges that are made regarding  a given member country, the more likely INTERPOL is to have those violations on its radar. For example, once INTERPOL became aware of the disproportionate number and impropriety of Red Notices being requested by Venezuela for fraud-related matters, it began to deny significantly more requests from Venezuela for such Red Notices.

3.  You may be setting yourself up for success at a later time.  If the requesting country is not regconized as a member country that abuses its INTERPOL membership, it may be so recognized later, in part due to your efforts.  At that time, a renewed challenge may be appropriate. 

4.  Finally, if no attempt is made to remove a Red Notice simply because of the possibility of failure, then the Red Notice will go unchallenged and failure is guaranteed due to simple lack of effort.

As always, comments and thoughts are welcomed.


DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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