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Manuel Noriega May be Extradited to Panama

Panamanian military strongman Gen. Manuel Antonio Noriega raises his fists to acknowledge the crowd  cheers during a Dignity Batallion rally in Panama City on May 20, 1988.  U.S. pressure to force Noriega out of power had so far failed.  (AP Photo/John Hopper)

Panamanian military strongman Gen. Manuel Antonio Noriega raises his fists to acknowledge the crowd cheers during a Dignity Batallion rally in Panama City on May 20, 1988. U.S. pressure to force Noriega out of power had so far failed. (AP Photo/John Hopper)

Manuel Noriega might be going back to Panama.

The Panamanian strongman’s lawyer said French authorities have agreed to extradite him to his native homeland.

Yves Leberquier said French Prime Minister Francois Fillon signed the extradition on July 6 and that Noriega was notified last week.

It was not immediately clear when Noriega would be sent home.

Panama's foreign ministry said Tuesday it has not been notified that an extradition order for Noriega was signed. Officials said they are looking into the matter.

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Noriega was imprisoned in the United States for two decades after being deposed in a 1989 U.S. invasion. He was sent from Florida to France last year to face money laundering charges, where he was sentenced to 7 years in prison.

A Panamanian court has convicted Noriega — military dictator from 1983 to 1989 — in the death of a military commander. He faces 20 years in jail in the case.

Based on reporting by The Associated Press.

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