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Old 5th October 2019, 10:14 AM   #1
Information Analyst
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US suspect in UK road death flees country / Misuse of Diplomatic Immunity

BBC News: Harry Dunn crash - Mum appeals for US suspect's return

"The mother of a man killed in a car crash has appealed "as a mum" for a suspect to return to the UK to face questioning by the police.

Harry Dunn, 19, of Charlton, Banbury, was killed when his motorbike crashed with a car near RAF Croughton in Northamptonshire on 27 August.

The wife of a US diplomat left the country after she was made a suspect.

Charlotte Charles's appeal comes after police said they wanted to interview an American woman in her 40s.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said he had expressed his "disappointment" to the US ambassador about her departure.

Mrs Charles says she is "utterly devastated" the woman has left the country, and is willing to travel to the US to seek her return."

Looking forward to seeing how the "special relationship" works in this case...

Last edited by Information Analyst; 5th October 2019 at 10:16 AM.
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Old 5th October 2019, 11:31 AM   #2
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"As a mum" she has the same standing as every other citizen to ask that this person be brought to justice.

The rest is appeal to emotion, which is reasonable, but irrelevant to the request she's making.
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Old 5th October 2019, 11:45 AM   #3
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"Supt Sarah Johnson said the suspect had previously told the force she did not intend to “leave the country in the near future”.

Johnson said: “Northamptonshire police followed all of its usual procedures following the incident, including liaising closely with the suspect, who engaged fully with us at the time and had previously confirmed to us that she had no plans to leave the country in the near future.”

Sounds like she has lied, fled and will quote diplomatic immunity to avoid extradition as well as the embarrassment of being questioned by the UK cops.
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Old 5th October 2019, 11:53 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
"As a mum" she has the same standing as every other citizen to ask that this person be brought to justice.

The rest is appeal to emotion, which is reasonable, but irrelevant to the request she's making.
Thank you for your utterly irrelevant opinion.
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Old 5th October 2019, 12:06 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
"As a mum" she has the same standing as every other citizen to ask that this person be brought to justice.

The rest is appeal to emotion, which is reasonable, but irrelevant to the request she's making.
Why is it irrelevant?
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Old 5th October 2019, 12:19 PM   #6
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Misuse of diplomatic immunity

This is a dreadful misuse of diplomatic immunity;

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-englan...shire-49945461

The wife of a US diplomat drives on the wrong side of the road, head on into a motorcyclist causing his death. That is a clear case of death by dangerous driving.

She has fled the UK after claiming diplomatic immunity.

Diplomats get immunity so they are protected from spurious allegations of criminality by the host country. Not from killing another due to a gross neglect of care for other road users whilst out driving.

The USA should have waved her immunity to allow a full investigation and likely charging.
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Old 5th October 2019, 12:27 PM   #7
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she watched Lethal Weapon 2 too many times...
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Old 5th October 2019, 12:55 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Why is it irrelevant?
His reputation both precedes and follows him.
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Old 5th October 2019, 01:02 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
"Supt Sarah Johnson said the suspect had previously told the force she did not intend to “leave the country in the near future”.

Johnson said: “Northamptonshire police followed all of its usual procedures following the incident, including liaising closely with the suspect, who engaged fully with us at the time and had previously confirmed to us that she had no plans to leave the country in the near future.”

Sounds like she has lied, fled and will quote diplomatic immunity to avoid extradition as well as the embarrassment of being questioned by the UK cops.
Is the wife of a diplomat covered by diplomatic immunity? I'll be honest it isn't a question that's ever occurred to me before.
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Old 5th October 2019, 01:12 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Steve View Post
Thank you for your utterly irrelevant opinion.
I directly addressed the woman's actual argument. I think my opinion is entirely relevant.
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Old 5th October 2019, 01:13 PM   #11
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Biased article. An objective journalist would say she was driving on the right of the road.
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Old 5th October 2019, 01:31 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I directly addressed the woman's actual argument. I think my opinion is entirely relevant.
No. No it’s not. If the death of a child doesn’t warrant an emotional response that adds to her point, what does? But you know this. Sometimes your posts are unfathomable.
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Old 5th October 2019, 01:32 PM   #13
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Not actually that uncommon (well the someone dying is)

We are one of the piddliest OECD countries in the world and have had 60 cases in 20 years

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/a...ectid=12035992
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Old 5th October 2019, 01:48 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by P.J. Denyer View Post
Is the wife of a diplomat covered by diplomatic immunity? I'll be honest it isn't a question that's ever occurred to me before.
In general, yes. Under Article 37 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations: "The members of the family of a diplomatic agent forming part of his household shall, if they are not nationals of the receiving State, enjoy the privileges and immunities specified in articles 29 to 36."
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Old 5th October 2019, 01:49 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
"As a mum" she has the same standing as every other citizen to ask that this person be brought to justice.

The rest is appeal to emotion, which is reasonable, but irrelevant to the request she's making.
When it comes to irrelevancy, you seem to be an expert. Could you please enlighten us further?
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Old 5th October 2019, 02:00 PM   #16
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I have long thought that diplomatic immunity was never meant to allow diplomats and particularly not their spouses to evade the consequences of their own lawbreaking.

It is one thing to allow US Embassy staff in London to not pay the congestion charge or their parking tickets (though UK staff do voluntarily pay their parking tickets in the USA, but I digress...), but it is an entirely different thing when there is a suspicion of a serious crime such as one that involves a death.

I do not know if this particular wife of a diplomat broke the law when she was involved in an accident, but I do think she has a moral (if not legal) responsibility to at least cooperate with an interview with Northants Police. The parents of Harry Dunn deserve to know what happened.

Yes, this is an emotionally driven response. The death of a teenager tends to evoke that in me.
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Old 5th October 2019, 03:29 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I directly addressed the woman's actual argument. I think my opinion is entirely relevant.
What argument do you think she made? It seems like a request to me.
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Old 5th October 2019, 04:26 PM   #18
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She needs to be named and shamed, with her photo prominently displayed in the news media
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Old 5th October 2019, 04:38 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
She needs to be named and shamed, with her photo prominently displayed in the news media
I didn’t think the mother’s comments were that bad





(Sorry.........).
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Old 5th October 2019, 04:55 PM   #20
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All what Diplomatic Immunity means is that criminal matters are routed through the countries' equivalent of the State Department instead of the DOJ.
In essence, the State Department, in deliberation with Justice and the country in question, can recommend that no charges will brought if the risk of retaliation against your diplomats exceeds the need for domestic justice.
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Old 5th October 2019, 06:04 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Agatha View Post
I have long thought that diplomatic immunity was never meant to allow diplomats and particularly not their spouses to evade the consequences of their own lawbreaking.

It is one thing to allow US Embassy staff in London to not pay the congestion charge or their parking tickets (though UK staff do voluntarily pay their parking tickets in the USA, but I digress...), but it is an entirely different thing when there is a suspicion of a serious crime such as one that involves a death.

I do not know if this particular wife of a diplomat broke the law when she was involved in an accident, but I do think she has a moral (if not legal) responsibility to at least cooperate with an interview with Northants Police. The parents of Harry Dunn deserve to know what happened.

Yes, this is an emotionally driven response. The death of a teenager tends to evoke that in me.
Problem is some times in places it is actually needed.

Pretty easy for a dodgy countries govt to stitch people up.

Agree with the rest though.

Think it is one of those bites you in the **** sometimes, but generally works things.
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Old 5th October 2019, 06:11 PM   #22
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Anyone seen the name of the diplomat's wife yet?

And does she have a son named "Warlock"?
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Old 6th October 2019, 03:44 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Anyone seen the name of the diplomat's wife yet?

And does she have a son named "Warlock"?
Can we buy their child a tricycle?
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Old 6th October 2019, 05:09 AM   #24
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As a police officer first posted to work in rural Scotland, the very first road accident I went to was caused by a German driver who was on the wrong side of the road. Luckily no one was even injured, despite there being a head on crash. The driver was put to court and banned from driving. His mate had to get himself insured to drive the car home.

I was first at the scene where a Dutch tourist had got confused at a junction and his car was hit by a lorry. The driver lost three of his immediate family, killed instantly. The lorry driver was uninjured. No action was taken against the driver, it was accepted he had suffered too much already and weirdly, none of the rest of the people in the car had been wearing seatbelts and that played a major part in their deaths.

I assisted with the aftermath of a Norwegian tourist who went head on into a local's car, killing the local. That crash resulted in the local council painting reminder arrows at junctions to show which side of the road to drive on. The Norwegian was put to court and banned from driving. He asked for his vehicle to be scrapped, which was done.

I was in near miss with some French tourists who left a national trust property we were going to visit and they were gesticulating at me, as if I was the one on the wrong side of the road?!?

Such accidents are not uncommon and need to be investigated so to either

- suggest road improvements, such as painting reminder arrows outside the base where the crash took place
- determine the level of fault of the driver and whether or not they should be prosecuted and convicted.
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Old 6th October 2019, 06:33 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Steve View Post
What argument do you think she made? It seems like a request to me.
A request that should be honored because she's a mum.
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Old 6th October 2019, 06:55 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
She needs to be named and shamed, with her photo prominently displayed in the news media

If her name hasn't been leaked yet by justifiably pissed off local LEOs, it could be because her "diplomat" husband is some kind of spook.
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Old 6th October 2019, 09:41 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by lionking View Post
Sometimes your posts are unfathomable.

What's quite odd is that there are several posters where who were completely changed after Trump was elected.

Is that what happens to one's brain when they have to defend someone quite clearly evil for their "team"? Or were they just hiding out until evil became king...
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Old 6th October 2019, 10:24 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
A request that should be honored because she's a mum.
So she made no argument then. Your claim of responding to an argument was wrong. Your post was, in fact, irrelevant.

Was it being a mother, and no other reason, that she thought her request should be honoured? Do you have the capability of understanding that a mother whose son has been killed would inject some emotion into her comments instead of employing just machine logic?
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Old 6th October 2019, 10:26 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by lionking View Post
No. No it’s not. If the death of a child doesn’t warrant an emotional response that adds to her point, what does? But you know this. Sometimes your posts are unfathomable.
My observation is that we have several posters here who are only minimally capable of understanding emotion.
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Old 6th October 2019, 10:38 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
A request that should be honored because she's a mum.
No, because she's the mother of the teenager who was killed. It's right there in the article:

"Mrs Charles told the BBC's PM programme: "We're really hoping to try to get her back; from me, as a mum, to her, as a mum, you just hope that he [Mr Raab] can try to get through to her...." "

Did you not bother reading it?

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Old 6th October 2019, 11:16 AM   #31
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It is staggering that diplomatic immunity cannot be claimed when diplomats failed to pay their cleaners the minimum wage;

https://lawofnationsblog.com/2017/12...oyment-claims/

but it can be claimed after a fatal road accident.
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Old 6th October 2019, 11:21 AM   #32
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The driver apparently was initially cooperating with the police;

https://www.northants.police.uk/news...ice-statement/

"Statement from Superintendent Sarah Johnson, Head of Operations for Northamptonshire Police, said:

“We can confirm that a 42-year-old American woman being treated as a suspect in our investigation into a fatal road traffic collision on the B4031 Park End, Croughton, on Tuesday, August 27, has left the country.

“Northamptonshire Police followed all of its usual procedures following the incident, including liaising closely with the suspect, who engaged fully with us at the time and had previously confirmed to us that she had no plans to leave the country in the near future...."

It may be that she was ordered back to the USA.
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Old 6th October 2019, 11:38 AM   #33
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I think that there is a very good case for causing death by dangerous driving.

Going by street view, turning left out of RAF Croughton, the first indication that the driver is on the wrong side of the road is a warning sign for heavy plant crossing, which is on the left side of the road. That should cause an observant driver to think why is that sign not on my side of the road?

A few hundred yards further on, at a junction for a recycling centre, there is a SLOW marking on the road, which to a driver on the wrong side would be upside down. A few yards further on and there is an arrow on the road pointing to the left, another clear indicator as to what side of the road a driver should be on.

Another few hundred yards and there is a road sign that to the driver is facing the opposite way.

At the junction to Park End Barn, there is a SLOW and two centre line arrows that again, to a driver on the wrong side of the road, indicates the direction of travel should be in the left lane, not the right.

Next there is a mini round a bout, the give way and arrow markings making it clear what side of the road is the correct direction of travel. That is at Park End, which from the press release is where the accident took place.

All of that means there were numerous clear indications as to what is the correct side of the road to drive on and for any driver to miss all of those signs and markings easily makes this a Sec 1 RTA1988

"A person who causes the death of another person by driving a mechanically propelled vehicle dangerously on a road or other public place is guilty of an offence."
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Old 6th October 2019, 11:54 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by P.J. Denyer View Post
Is the wife of a diplomat covered by diplomatic immunity? I'll be honest it isn't a question that's ever occurred to me before.
Short answer, probably. Longer answer, it depends but generally yes.
However it could be argued that a promise to remain to in the UK constituted waiving of diplomatic status by submitting to the jurisdiction. It's rather moot now.
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Old 6th October 2019, 01:14 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Nessie View Post
I think that there is a very good case for causing death by dangerous driving.

Going by street view, turning left out of RAF Croughton, the first indication that the driver is on the wrong side of the road is a warning sign for heavy plant crossing, which is on the left side of the road. That should cause an observant driver to think why is that sign not on my side of the road?

A few hundred yards further on, at a junction for a recycling centre, there is a SLOW marking on the road, which to a driver on the wrong side would be upside down. A few yards further on and there is an arrow on the road pointing to the left, another clear indicator as to what side of the road a driver should be on.

Another few hundred yards and there is a road sign that to the driver is facing the opposite way.

At the junction to Park End Barn, there is a SLOW and two centre line arrows that again, to a driver on the wrong side of the road, indicates the direction of travel should be in the left lane, not the right.

Next there is a mini round a bout, the give way and arrow markings making it clear what side of the road is the correct direction of travel. That is at Park End, which from the press release is where the accident took place.

All of that means there were numerous clear indications as to what is the correct side of the road to drive on and for any driver to miss all of those signs and markings easily makes this a Sec 1 RTA1988

"A person who causes the death of another person by driving a mechanically propelled vehicle dangerously on a road or other public place is guilty of an offence."
I guess most of that is only pertinent if the driver was newly-arrived in the country, but even then, the fact that the UK drives on the left is hardly something they can have been unaware or not been reminded of.
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Old 6th October 2019, 01:35 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
Short answer, probably. Longer answer, it depends but generally yes.
However it could be argued that a promise to remain to in the UK constituted waiving of diplomatic status by submitting to the jurisdiction. It's rather moot now.
She didn't promise to remain, she told police she had no plans to leave in the near future.
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Old 6th October 2019, 01:42 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by Nessie View Post
This is a dreadful misuse of diplomatic immunity;

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-englan...shire-49945461

The wife of a US diplomat drives on the wrong side of the road, head on into a motorcyclist causing his death. That is a clear case of death by dangerous driving.
How do we know she was driving on the wrong side of the road? It's not mentioned in the article you linked to.
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Old 6th October 2019, 01:52 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by Matthew Best View Post
How do we know she was driving on the wrong side of the road? It's not mentioned in the article you linked to.
https://edition.cnn.com/2019/10/06/u...gbr/index.html

"An American diplomat's wife, who left the United Kingdom after becoming a suspect in a fatal traffic collision, was driving on the wrong side of the road at the time of the crash, according to the police.

Harry Dunn, 19, died in the accident while riding his motorbike, according to a statement from his family. The accident took place August 27 in Northamptonshire in central England, which is home to a Royal Air Force station controlled by the US Air Force.

According to a Northamptonshire Police statement after the crash, a car "collided head on with a black Kawasaki motorcycle traveling in the opposite direction." On Sunday, they confirmed "the car was being driven on the wrong side of the road."

The UK has urged the return of the unnamed American diplomat's wife, 42, who left the country after the crash.

The case sparked an outcry among British lawmakers and the victim's family after local media reported the police's request for the suspect's diplomatic immunity to be waived was rejected."

Last edited by Information Analyst; 6th October 2019 at 01:55 PM.
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Old 6th October 2019, 05:50 PM   #39
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Thanks for that.

I'm guessing if Libyan assassins can get away with actually shooting and killing a policeman from the window of their Embassy without any comeback, then this lady can get away with hitting someone with her car, but I'll be glad to be proved wrong.
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Old 6th October 2019, 06:11 PM   #40
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She fled to the US, can't we charge her here and/or honor a UK extradition?

This is odd because it is a US citizen with diplomatic immunity in the US. I see no reason the US shouldn't prosecute and wave diplomatic immunity. It would set a decent example for cases where we object to foreign diplomats claiming diplomatic immunity after serious crimes like this.
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