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Name: People v. Minor
Case #: G031791
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 01/27/2005
Subsequent History: 5/11/05: Revw. GRANTED & transferred; depublished

An extradition agreement precluding punishment for a particular conviction does not prevent use of that offense to enhance the sentence in another case. In 1993, the defendant was placed on probation in Riverside County for gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and other offenses after a drunk driving accident in which he injured two people and killed one. In 1998, while on probation for that case, he was involved in other offenses in Orange County, including one that resulted in a charge of assault with a deadly weapon on a police officer. The Riverside County conviction was alleged as a prior strike in the Orange County case. While charges were pending, the defendant fled to Italy, where he was eventually apprehended. Riverside County sought extradition, and the affidavit in support of extradition indicated that the defendant would be sentenced to eleven years (out of a maximum of fifteen) on the probation violation. The Italian court denied extradition in that case, citing the fact that such a long sentence without credit for the five years of successful probation would be unconstitutional under Italian law, and also noting that defendant’s guilty plea in that case had deprived him of the opportunity to present a defense. The Italian court granted extradition in the Orange County case. On appeal from the Orange County case, the defendant argued that the trial court had exceeded its jurisdiction in enhancing his sentence based on the Riverside prior, arguing that the “doctrine of specialty”and the extradition order precluded the court from using that prior as an enhancement. The doctrine of specialty precludes a nation from prosecuting an individual for any offense other than that for which the surrendering state agreed to extradite. Citing case law holding that an enhancement based on a prior conviction punishes the defendant not for the original offense, but for the current one, the court rejected this argument. The court further found that the language of the Italian court’s order did not show an intent to bar future use of the prior conviction, particularly since the court had granted extradition in the Orange County case with the knowledge that the prior conviction was alleged as a strike in that case.