BY MIKE ARMSTRONG
A Nigerian man wanted in Texas on child pornography charges is still detained in Canada nearly five months after consenting to extradition.
Adesanya Prince walked into Canada from the U.S. at Roxham Road, the controversial unofficial border crossing south of Montreal.
Lawyer Sabrina Lapolla represented Prince at his extradition hearing last year but left the case in November.
“I’m surprised to hear he’s still in Canada,” said Lapolla.
Prince was detained by RCMP officers and turned over to Canada Border Services agents. It was during a security background check that agents found Prince was wanted in Texas on child porn charges.
The 50-year-old pleaded guilty to one count of “promotion of child pornography” in Harris County, Texas, on Feb. 23, 2018. He was scheduled to be sentenced on May 10 but instead fled to Canada. He crossed at Roxham Road on March 9, 2018.
According to court documents obtained by Global News, Prince is originally from Nigeria but had been living in Houston, Texas. In January 2017, he was working as a security guard when he sent a co-worker three videos on a cellphone app, the documents state. Two of the videos involved bestiality, while the third depicted the graphic sexual assault of a young girl aged two to four.
The co-worker also told police that Prince made unsolicited sexual advances towards her, including trying to grab her breasts on two occasions.
When Prince turned up in Canada, U.S. authorities filed a request for provisional arrest pending his extradition. According to that document, Prince was interviewed by Houston police officers on May 15, 2017.
“He acknowledged that he received the pornographic videos from a friend in December 2016, kept them on his phone for a period of time and then sent them to a co-worker,” the document read.
In registering his guilty plea in February of last year, Prince was officially entered into the U.S. sex offender registry, a designation he’ll hold until the end of his life.
Despite being a registered sex offender, Prince was released from custody in Montreal for three days in August of last year.
Quebec Superior Court Justice Daniel Royer denied the initial U.S. extradition request on the grounds that the case outlined against Prince was “not admissible or reliable.” Among the problems with the request, the judge found, was a “record of the case for prosecution” when, in fact, it should have been “for sentencing,” as Prince had already pleaded guilty.
Royer dismissed the request and ordered Prince discharged.
Prince was released with conditions. The court was given an affidavit from another Nigerian asylum seeker that Prince could stay with him.
The two didn’t know each other, but according to the affidavit, they are from the same tribe in Nigeria.
The second Nigerian also crossed into Canada at Roxham Road and is seeking asylum.
Prince stayed with the man at an apartment in Pierrefonds, Que., but was detained three days later when U.S. authorities made a second and more complete extradition request.
Prince gave himself up to police and was detained again.
“They called, and there was no resistance at all,” said Lapolla. “He fully co-operated.”
Despite consenting to extradition on Nov. 1, 2018, Prince is still detained north of Montreal.
According to a spokesperson for the Department of Justice Canada, “the matter is now pending before the minister of justice for decision.”
© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.