GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. – Disgraced Democratic fundraiser Norman Hsu will be handed over to local authorities as soon as his health improves enough for him to be released from St. Mary's Hospital.
"My understanding is that after he is released from the hospital he will be booked into our facility," said Heather Benjamin, spokeswoman for the Mesa County sheriff, on Saturday.
She said she did not know what would happen after that, but the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel said he would go through local courts for an extradition hearing on felony theft charges in California. The Sentinel quoted assistant U.S. Attorney Wyatt Angelo. Neither Angelo nor Mesa County District Attorney Pete Hautzinger returned calls Saturday, but Jeff Dorschner, Denver spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's office in Colorado, confirmed the newspaper report.
The New York City-based Hsu has been a top fundraiser for Democratic candidates, including U.S. Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barrack Obama, donating $260,000 to Democratic Party groups and federal candidates since 2004, according to Federal Election Commission records.
Samantha Moe, spokeswoman for St. Mary's Hospital, said Hsu remained in fair condition. She said she could release no other information.
Hospital officials have declined to say what ails Hsu, or why Amtrak officials called the local fire department on Thursday to report a passenger had become ill on the California Zephyr. Police did not even go to the train station on the call.
Later that day, however, FBI officials in San Francisco called St. Mary's and said a patient there was wanted on federal fugitive charges. The FBI did not say how they knew he had been hospitalized.
Hsu had been scheduled to appear before a federal magistrate on unlawful flight charges Wednesday at which time he was expected to ask that his $2 million bail be cut in half. He was facing a felony grand theft conviction for which he had pleaded no contest in 1992.
His lawyer firm said he had been under a lot of pressure since first appearing in California on the charge. It was not clear whether he would fight extradition.
California Attorney General spokesman Garth Lacy said HST's lawyers told prosecutors Hsu arrived by charter jet at the Oakland, Calif., airport about 8:30 a.m. Wednesday EDT and then wasn't heard from again.
Hsu, a Hong Kong native, had spent 15 years overseas on the lam from the 1991 theft conviction until he surrendered to authorities last week.
Prosecutors say Hsu bilked investors out of $1 million by telling them he had a contract to buy and sell latex gloves, but he never purchased the gloves and had no contract to sell them.