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U.S. citizen suspected of murder extradited to S. Korea in 18 years

Xinhua, September 23, 2015 Adjust font size:

A U.S. citizen, suspected of murdering a South Korean college student 18 years ago, was extradited to South Korea on early Wednesday.

Arthur Patterson, 36, arrived at the country via a flight from Los Angeles to Incheon, west of capital Seoul, at 4:26 a.m. local time. Patterson was accused of stabbing the South Korean student multiple times to death.

In April 1997, the South Korean college student, aged 22 at the time, was found dead at the toilet of a fast food restaurant in the popular foreign district of Itaewon in central Seoul.

Patterson and his Korean-American friend Edward Lee were at the site of the homicide. South Korean prosecutors accused Lee of murder at the time, but Lee was acquitted by the Supreme Court in September 1998.

Patterson fled Seoul to the United States in August 1999 when prosecutors failed to extend his foreign travel ban.

Amid growing public anger here at the U.S. citizen fleeing the country without standing trial, South Korea's justice ministry called for the U.S. authorities to extradite Patterson to the country.

Patterson was arrested in May 2011 by the U.S. investigation authorities, and the U.S. prosecutors indicted him for homicide in December 2011.

In October 2012, a U.S. court permitted his extradition to South Korea, but Patterson delayed the extradition with habeas corpus petitions. The U.S. citizen finally lost the petition, and was extradited to Seoul. Endi