LOCATION: The White House
DOCKET NO.: 97-1217
DECIDED BY: Rehnquist Court (1986-2005)
LOWER COURT: New Mexico Supreme Court
CITATION: 524 US 151 (1998)
DECIDED: Jun 08, 1998
Facts of the case
The Extradition Act implements the Constitution's extradition clause and provides for the extradition from one state of a fugitive from justice when a demand for the fugitive's extradition is made by another state. Manuel Ortiz, a parolee from the Ohio correctional system, fled to New Mexico after Ohio prison officials told him that they planned to revoke his parole status. The governor of New Mexico issued a warrant directing Ortiz's return upon Ohio's demand. Ortiz then sought habeas corpus relief in New Mexico. Ultimately, the Supreme Court of New Mexico affirmed a grant of habeas corpus relief. The court expressed the view that Ortiz was a refugee from injustice and that the New Mexico constitution, which guarantees the right of seeking and obtaining safety, prevailed over the state's duty under the extradition clause.
Did the Supreme Court of New Mexico err in upholding grant of state habeas corpus relief to parolee whom state of Ohio sought to extradite as alleged fugitive from justice by going beyond the scope of permissible inquiry?