Lebanese man not to be extradited to US on weapons charges

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An official says the Czech Republic's justice minister has decided that a Lebanese national cannot be extradited to the United States to face weapons charges.

Prague's Municipal Court allowed the extradition in September but the minister, Robert Pelikan, has the final say and said "no" Thursday.

The Lebanese suspect, Ali Taan Fayad, and two citizens of Ivory Coast were arrested in Prague 2014 while allegedly trying to sell weapons to undercover U.S. law enforcement agents.

Court spokeswoman Marketa Puci said Fayad and an Ivory Coast man were released following the minister's decision.

The announcement came hours after five Czechs who went missing in Lebanon in July boarded a flight in Beirut back to their homeland.

Czech officials declined to comment on media speculation that Fayad was exchanged for the Czechs.