The United States has called on the Honduran government to arrest and extradite former President Juan Orlando Hernandez, a Honduran government source said Monday, as police surrounded the former leader’s home.
Speculation has swirled for months that the United States was planning to extradite Hernandez when he left office amid charges of colluding with drug traffickers. Left-wing leader Xiomara Castro replaced him as president last month.
The senior Honduran official, who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media about it, told Reuters that the United States “has requested the provisional arrest of former President Juan Orlando Hernández for the purpose of extradition”.
CNN Espanol also reported that the request involved Hernandez releasing what appeared to be a government extradition document.
Hernandez could not immediately be reached for comment, but he has always denied any links to drug traffickers.
The U.S. Embassy in Tegucigalpa and the government did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The Honduran Ministry of Foreign Affairs earlier in the day that the United States Embassy had requested the arrest of a Honduran politician who has an extradition request to the United States.
The ministry did not reveal the name of the official but said the request had been sent to the country’s Supreme Court.