Court Watch - POSTED: 2010/03/19 11:34
A Guatemalan court has approved former President Alfonso Portillo's extradition to the U.S. to face money laundering charges.
Portillo does not face imminent extradition, however. Under Guatemalan law, he must first be tried at home in a separate corruption case before facing charges abroad.
Portillo vows to appeal Wednesday's ruling, saying: "This is not finished yet."
He is charged in a New York federal court with embezzling $1.5 million in foreign donations intended to buy school library books in Guatemala. He allegedly endorsed checks drawn from a New York bank and deposited them in a Miami account.
Portillo was president from 2000 to 2004. He was arrested Jan. 26 on the U.S. extradition request. He denies the charges.