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Noriega Has Been Handed Over to Panama, French Government Says

Dec. 11 (Bloomberg) -- Manuel Noriega has been handed over to Panamanian authorities to extradite the former dictator to his homeland, the French Justice Ministry said in an e-mailed statement.

Noriega had been serving a French prison term on money laundering charges after having been imprisoned 20 years in the U.S. for drug trafficking. The 77-year-old Noriega, who was overthrown in a U.S. invasion in 1989, has been convicted in absentia in Panama for the murder of political opponents during his six-year rule.

The Panamanian officials accompanied him on a flight to Panama City via Madrid earlier today, TF1 Television said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Gregory Viscusi in Paris at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at

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