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Q: Diplomatic Immunity ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: Diplomatic Immunity
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: jeraboo-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 28 Oct 2006 10:49 PDT
Expires: 27 Nov 2006 09:49 PST
Question ID: 777806
If you you kill a man in a bar brawl in Washington State and the
police show up and you present what appears to the officer to be a
genuine diplomatic passport and you identify yourself as a diplomatic
agent of Belize, and this claim cannot be immediately verified or
disproved, would the officer have any legal right to detain you
Subject: Re: Diplomatic Immunity
Answered By: tutuzdad-ga on 30 Oct 2006 08:52 PST
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Dear jeraboo-ga;

Thank you for allowing me to answer your interesting question. The
answer is ABSOLUTELY. Here?s why:

Much of how the issue would be handled depends on what ?type? of
diplomat the suspect is. Under the provisions of the immunity
agreement diplomats are generally immune to prosecution but reasonable
constraints may be applied in emergency circumstances involving
self-defense, public safety, or the prevention of serious criminal
acts. In these situations it is not a violation of the diplomatic
immunity compact to detain or arrest even the highest raking

Legal Aspects of Diplomatic Immunity and Privileges

Let us stick with the details of case you specifically posed however.
First and foremost, for initial investigative purposes the fact that
the diplomatic immunity claim cannot be ?disproved? is a moot point.
The credentials cannot be verified so initially at least the suspect
would be treated as any other person who committed murder. Since the
rule is to err on the side of caution the suspect in the case would
certainly be taken into custody until such time as adequate
verification took place. At the very least the suspect would be
detained until the circumstances surrounding the murder were unraveled
and his diplomatic status (if any) could be confirmed.

Secondly, diplomatic immunity does not provide a carte blanche pass
for any crime. Such protection does not automatically afford a ?get
out of jail free? card nor does it automatically protect one from the
prosecution of especially egregious crimes in all cases. In response
to particularly serious or heinous crimes the official's home country
also reserves the right to waive immunity thereby subjecting the
official to the laws and prosecution of the host country. In addition,
or in lieu of domestic prosecution, the official?s home county may
order the forced recall of the diplomat and opt to prosecute the
individuals according to their own state laws and customs. Until such
a determination is made the official would most likely be detained by
authorities until his expulsion. This type of expulsion is sometimes
referred to as ?persona non grata? (unwelcome person).

To some your hypothetical scenario may seem a bit ridiculous but in
truth such occurrences are not entirely unknown. For example, in 1997
Gueorgui Makharadze, the deputy ambassador of the Republic of Georgia
was arrested for manslaughter in a DUI related motor vehicle accident.
He was arrested, detained, and eventually convicted by a US court and
imprisoned for a term of seven to twenty-one years in a federal prison
in Butner, North Carolina for his crime. He was released after serving
only three years of his sentence and was deported to The Republic of
Georgia to finish serving the remainder of his sentence. He becomes
eligible for parole on October 2007.



If foreign diplomats (some of them substantially less friendly toward
Americans than others) were protected from the law to such a degree
that they could kill US citizens in bar brawls and simply walk away,
there would almost surely be a lot more dead people lying around. Rest
easy; such is not the case. They may be able to double park and get
away with it but they can?t kill people and expect to get the same

I hope you find that my answer exceeds your expectations. If you have
any questions about my research please post a clarification request
prior to rating the answer. Otherwise I welcome your rating and your
final comments and I look forward to working with you again in the
near future. Thank you for bringing your question to us.

Best regards;
Tutuzdad-ga ? Google Answers Researcher





Google ://







jeraboo-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Great, Tutuzdad!

Subject: Re: Diplomatic Immunity
From: barneca-ga on 28 Oct 2006 13:33 PDT
i could be wrong, but i don't believe diplomatic immunity prevents you
from being arrested or detained, i believe it just prevents you from
being charged, or tried.  i think a real diplomatic agent of belize
would be detained until he could be deported, or until belize waived
diplomatic immunity.  i think you would be detained until your fraud
was discovered, in which case, they would add another charge to


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