Three days after the UK’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) announced it would charge actor Kevin Spacey with sexual assault, the Hollywood star may now be facing extradition to Britain within weeks.
UK British authorities are seeking formal extradition of the 62-year old unless he returns voluntarily to be formally charged. At this stage, Spacey cannot be charged since he is not in the country.
He faces a total of five charges — the first two relating to alleged sexual assaults against a man in London in March 2005, and another alleged victim who claims he was assaulted in August 2008.
A third complainant against Spacey relates to an alleged assault on a man, now in his 30s, in Gloucestershire in April 2013. Spacey is accused of a fifth count against one victim by allegedly causing them to engage in penetrative sex without consent — a serious crime akin to rape with a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.
The Met Police have reviewed evidence of these complaints dating between 2005 and 2013, and are currently waiting for the CPS to make a decision, since it has not yet confirmed or denied whether Spacey will need to be extradited to the UK.
Head of the CPS Special Crime Division, Rosemary Ainslie, told BBC following the review of evidence, the CPS have “authorised criminal charges against Kevin Spacey, 62, for four counts of sexual assault against three men”.
“The Crown Prosecution Service reminds all concerned that criminal proceedings against Mr Spacey are active and that he has the right to a fair trial,” she said.
The Sun have reported on interviews that extradition experts held with Guardian which suggest that US police may be sent to locate Spacey and detain him on behalf of British authorities.
Nick Vamos, the former head of extradition at CPS, believes Spacey could be sent back within weeks if he does not contest extradition.
“If he comes back to the UK, he could get a bail package that allows him to return to the US,” Vamos said, adding that the actor would have greater protections if he was formally extradited than if he flew back voluntarily.
US Department of Justice officials must first agree there was a probable cause the alleged offences were committed by Spacey, before they are permitted to order police to locate and detain him.