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‘Collar bomb’ accused set to return to Australia

AUSTRALIA: A man who allegedly attached a fake collar bomb to a Sydney schoolgirl’s neck in a failed extortion attempt and was later arrested in the US could be back in Australia in days, reports said Wednesday.

Thursday 15 September 2011, 03:44PM

Investment banker Paul Douglas Peters is not expected to fight his extradition to Australia at a hearing at the District Court in Louisville, in the United States, on Wednesday.

A spokesman at the US Attorney’s office said that “if the authorities from Australia are in Louisville then they could go ahead and take him into custody”.

Peters, 50, has been held at Kentucky’s Oldham County Jail since he was arrested at the home of his ex-wife near Louisville on August 15.

While he will not contest the extradition, his lawyers have said he will fight the charges against him of kidnapping, extortion and aggravated break and entry, Sydney’s Daily Telegraph said.

New South Wales police allege a bat-wielding, balaclava-wearing Peters broke into the luxury home of a wealthy Sydney family on August 3 and attached a fake bomb around the neck of 18-year-old Madeleine Pulver.

In a drawn-out drama that riveted Australia, a note attached to the device read: “Powerful new technology plastic explosives are located inside the small black combination case delivered to you.

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“The case is booby trapped. It can only be opened safely if you follow the instructions and comply with its terms and conditions.”

Despite warnings not to alert authorities, the terrified schoolgirl notified her family and police were called.

She then endured a 10-hour wait for bomb squad officers to confirm the device did not contain explosives and remove it from her neck.

Australian police have said they were able to track Peters to the United States, where he had business and family connections, via an email address attached to the fake bomb. –AFP




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