Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards test-fire a missile during military exercises in June 2011
Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards test-fire a missile during military exercises at an unknown location in June 2011. A retired British businessman on Friday lost a High Court battle against extradition to the United States on charges of conspiring to sell missile parts to Iran. © Rouholla Vahdati - AFP/ISNA/File
Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards test-fire a missile during military exercises in June 2011
AFP
Last updated: January 13, 2012

Briton loses US extradition fight over Iran claims

A retired British businessman on Friday lost a High Court battle against extradition to the United States on charges of conspiring to sell missile parts to Iran.

Christopher Tappin, 64, denies attempting to sell batteries for surface-to-air missiles, which were to be shipped from the United States to Tehran via the Netherlands.

Two judges sitting at the High Court in London ruled that his arguments that he had been entrapped by US customs agents were "unsustainable", and that it would not be "oppressive" to extradite him.

Tappin, the president of a golf club in an upscale area southeast of London, has fought a long battle against extradition to the United States, where he could face 35 years in jail.

He was appealing against a ruling by a lower court in February 2011, upheld by interior minister Theresa May, that said he could be extradited.

He says he was unaware that batteries he sourced in the United States were destined for Iran, and says he was caught up in a US customs sting.

Tappin has said he believed he was exporting batteries for the car industry in the Netherlands.

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