Iran says it requested the extradition of Sydney siege gunman Man Haron Monis 14 years ago but Australia refused to hand him over because there was no extradition agreement between the two countries.
Monis took 17 people hostage at the Lindt Chocolate Cafe in Martin Place on Monday morning. Police negotiated with him for 16 hours before officers stormed the building and two hostages as well as Monis were killed during the confrontation.
The head of Iran’s police said Monis was wanted for fraud while managing a travel agency in Iran before he fled to Australia via Malaysia in the late 1990s. An Iranian foreign ministry spokeswoman said Monis’s psychological state was discussed several times with Australian officials.
Read more about Man Haron Monis here.
The Iranian cleric was granted political asylum in Australia in 2001 and was on bail for a string of violent offences, including being an accessory to the murder of his ex-wife.
He was also facing more than 50 sexual and indecent assault charges and had a conviction for sending abusive letters to families of deceased Australian soldiers.
His former lawyer, Manny Conditsis, told the ABC Monis was an isolated figure who had acted alone.
“He came to Australia in the late 1990s as I understand it, obtained political asylum in 2001. He fled Iran because he was in fear of his life from the regime at that time,” Mr Conditsis said.
“Monis personally faced charges as a result of writing letters to the families of deceased Australian soldiers.”
“They were dealt with in 2013. Subsequent to that he was charged with accessory before and after the fact in relation to the murder of his former spouse. Eventually he got bail.”