A Singaporean, Lim Yong Nam, wanted by the United States for terrorism Iran has been arrested in Batam, Indonesia.
Lim Yong Nam’s name was on an Interpol Red Notice in connection with conspiracy to defraud the United States.
The US Department of Justice has requested that the Indonesian police arrest Lim Yong Nam and extradite him to the US, but the Singaporean government has been carrying out efforts to stop its citizen from being extradited, arguing that he did not violate the law.
In Lim Yong Nam’s case, he had—together with three other Singaporeans and an Iranian national—been indicted by the U.S. Department of Justice in 2011 for conspiring to allow electronics components from the US to be illegally exported to Iran rather than to their stated final destination of Singapore.
Lim was the owner and director of NEL Electronics, and was accused of acquiring 6,000 radio frequency modules for export to Iran together with Ms. Wong Yuh Lan, an agent of another electronics company.
The US alleged that 16 of the modules were later found in improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in Iraq that had not detonated and were designed to kill U.S. troops in Iraq.
The US had sought the extradition of all four Singaporeans, but Singapore Justice Choo Han Teck allowed Lim’s appeal, together with that of Ms. Wong, then 39, as it found the wrongdoing he was accused of by the US authorities was not an offence in Singapore.
Justice Choo Han Teck said the actions of the two did not satisfy the “double criminality” required under the extradition treaty between Singapore and the US, which means the act had to be an offence in both jurisdictions.
Justice Choo Han Teck noted that the US sought the extradition of Lim Yong Nam and Ms. Wong (a.k.a. Huang Yulan, Jancy Wong and Yuh Lan Wong) for their involvement in a conspiracy to breach trade sanctions of goods, even though Singapore had no such comparative legislation.
The other two Singaporeans were, however, extradited as they had illegally exported military-use antennas, which are controlled goods, to Singapore.
Both men pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the US by dishonest means, and were sentenced by a US federal court in 2013. Lim Kow Seng, then 44, was handed a 37-month prison term while Benson Hia Soo Gan (a.k.a. Benson, Soo Gan Benson Hia and Thomas Yan), then 46, got a 34-month jail term.
Lim Yong Nam made a serious blunder by leaving Singapore, where he had been protected by the strange decision of Justice Choo Han Tack.