A former United States diplomat facing illicit sex charges in his home country may be extradited to the Philippines, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said on Monday.
Guevarra said this could be possible once Dean Cheves, who was assigned at the US embassy in Manila, is held liable under local laws.
While assigned in Manila in September 2020 to February 2021, Cheves allegedly engaged in sexual activity with a 16-year-old he met online despite knowing the child’s age, according to the US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.
Such an incident reportedly happened on two occasions, with Cheves producing mobile phone videos of himself engaging in the acts each time.
A federal grand jury in the US state of Virginia recently charged the 61-year-old Cheves for engaging in illicit sexual conduct in a foreign place and possession of child pornography.
Guevarra said Cheves could also be held criminally and civilly liable in the country for child abuse, child pornography, human trafficking, and the Revised Penal Code.
“Mr. Cheves may be extradited to the Philippines once he is charged under any or all of the aforementioned laws, subject to the provisions of our extradition treaty with the US,” the Justice secretary told reporters.
Reporting by Albert Rovic Tan