Delay in Peru drugs case

Jamie Cato, or South Shore, is facing extradition to Peru where the authorities want him to stand trial for alleged drug trafficking.

Jamie Cato, or South Shore, is facing extradition to Peru where the authorities want him to stand trial for alleged drug trafficking.

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A Blackpool man fighting plans to extradite him to Peru on drug smuggling charges has been told he will have to wait until next year to learn his fate.

Jamie Cato, 43, from South Shore, is accused of illegal drug trafficking after cocaine was allegedly found in a parcel he sent from a post office in Lima.

Mr Cato, who served a jail term in this country for drug dealing but insists he is innocent of this offence, has had the threat of extradition looming over him for more than a year after his hearings were repeatedly postponed.

The extradition request was made at the Court of Appeal in Callao, Peru, on June 9, 2011, but the first Mr Cato heard of it was when he was arrested by police in the UK in June last year.

The allegation relates to an incident in 2009, when was living and working in Peru at the time.

But Mr Cato told The Gazette earlier this year that the experiences of his brother Jason, who he said was badly injured during his time in a Peruvian jail for an unrelated offence, left him determined to fight extradition plans.

The Cato family launched an online campaign to raise the money to bring Jason home after he was left needing extensive hospital treatment.

The extradition hearing, which had originally been due to take place in August, has now been pushed back until the New Year, meaning Mr Cato faces a further wait to discover if he will be forced to stand trial in Peru.

His legal team claims it is only the third extradition request from Peru in living memory.

The Metropolitan Police confirmed it had arrested Mr Cato last year.

A force spokesman added: “He appeared at Westminster Magistrates Court on June 5 and an extradition hearing was set for August 5-8.

“He appeared in court in August and the hearing was adjourned until January 5.”

The hearing is expected to last five days.