Anyone thinking runaway Karol Mello chose Belize as his hideaway home just for the sandy beaches would be mistaken, as he is now a permanent resident of the small country and a “prominent member of society” his lawyer claims, so his extradition to Slovakia is maybe off the cards.
Naturally, interior minister Robert Kalinak has been in contact with Belize authorities in the hope of seeing Mello, charged with multiple murders, handed back for ‘Slovak justice’. The minister’s optimism is probably fading, however.
Earlier in the week, Kalinak said there were a few possible ways of getting Mello back on Slovak soil, without revealing which, but since then Kalinak now admits the situation is more complicated than it first seemed. Mello was arrested in San Pedro on 11 July on an Interpol arrest warrant.
On 17 July, the Belize court halted Mello’s deportation while keeping him in custody, with his lawyer Goldfrey Smith (former MP) also contesting that his detention was illegal as no Belize authority had charged him with anything.
In the one year since escaping his second time from the grip of Slovak authorities, Karol Mello has taken on permanent resident of Belize, and is legally working and living there along with a wife and two children.
As a local resident, Mello is entitled to be given a fair hearing by local authorities, expected to take place later today. This could be the crucial next chapter in the story of one of Slovakia’s slipperiest wanted men, who has evaded Slovak justice for over 6 years, by being let go several times and given time to vanish.