Canada blocks extradition of Cisco suspect

Peter Alfred-Adekeye sued Cisco for antitrust and last year was arrested for data theft

A Canadian judge has blocked the extradition of a former Cisco Systems executive and slammed that company and U.S. authorities for allegedly duping Canadian officials into arresting him.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police arrested Peter Alfred-Adekeye in Vancouver, British Columbia, last May as he testified in a civil lawsuit involving his alleged theft of software from Cisco. The case was a countersuit that Cisco had filed after Alfred-Adekeye sued the company for alleged antitrust violations. He had claimed Cisco illegally required customers to buy service contracts in order to get software updates and patches.

U.S. attorneys had sought Alfred-Adekeye's arrest so they could extradite him to the U.S., where they said he faced 97 counts of computer crimes with a possible sentence of five years for each count. But on Tuesday, Justice Ronald McKinnon of the British Columbia Supreme Court said those officials used false and misleading information to persuade other Canadian judges to order the arrest, according to Alfred-Adekeye's attorney, Marilyn Sandford. The Vancouver Sun reported on the case Friday.

The U.S. Department of Justice requested an emergency extradition of Alfred-Adekeye, saying he was a flight risk. Alfred-Adekeye, who was released on bail 28 days after his arrest but forced to stay in Vancouver, has now returned to his home in Switzerland, Sandford said.

In an oral decision on Tuesday, McKinnon said Cisco seemed to have orchestrated the arrest to intimidate Alfred-Adekeye from pursuing his antitrust case against the company, according to Sandford.

"Here we have a man who has no criminal record, who made every possible effort to comply with U.S. immigration laws and procedures, but who dared to take on a multinational giant, rewarded with criminal charges that have been so grotesquely inflated as to make the average well-informed member of the public blanch at the audacity of it all," Sandford said, quoting from her notes on the judge's speech. A transcript of the decision has not yet been made available, she said. Supreme Court officials could not be reached for comment.

Cisco and Alfred-Adekeye settled their litigation in July 2010. According to Sandford, McKinnon said Cisco had engaged in "duplicity" in pursuing such strong criminal charges in a case in which it dropped its claims after a settlement just a few months later. Cisco had said Alfred-Adekeye had stolen software worth more than US$14,000, without providing a more specific figure.

U.S. authorities also used "innuendo, half-truths and falsehoods" about Alfred-Adekeye in the package of information it presented in favor of the emergency extradition, the judge said. For example, the U.S. attorney questioned Alfred-Adekeye's British citizenship even though he had been granted U.S. visas with a British passport in the past, and said Alfred-Adekeye had tried to use a Nigerian passport to enter the U.S. when he used the British passport, the judge said, according to Sandford.

Alfred-Adekeye had sought to enter the U.S. to testify in the civil case but was not allowed to, so a special session of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California was held in Vancouver on May 20, 2010. Arresting him while he testified at that session violated normal legal practice, McKinnon said.

Alfred-Adekeye once worked for Cisco but left to form his own companies in Silicon Valley, including Multiven, a provider of service and support for networking gear. Multiven sued Cisco in 2008, alleging it forced Cisco customers to buy SMARTnet service contracts from Cisco in order to get software updates.

In a statement on Friday, Cisco said the U.S. Secret Service had issued its criminal complaint against Alfred-Adekeye after nearly two years of investigation. "Ultimately this case is a matter between U.S. and Canadian governmental authorities," Cisco said.

Stephen Lawson covers mobile, storage and networking technologies for The IDG News Service. Follow Stephen on Twitter at @sdlawsonmedia. Stephen's e-mail address is stephen_lawson@idg.com

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags CriminalCisco SystemsNetworkingCivil lawsuitslegal

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Stephen Lawson

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?