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Romania Weighs US Request to Extradite Detained White Supremacist

Romanian court considers US request to extradite Robert Rundo, a white supremacist arrested by Romanian police last week in a Bucharest gym, carrying a false identity document.

The Bucharest Court of Appeal opened an extradition procedure to the US for the US far-rightist of Romanian origin Robert Paul Rundo, 33, arrested last week by Romanian authorities in a gym in Bucharest.

Rundo leads a neo-Nazi group in the US, which has been active for several years in Serbia, Bulgaria and Hungary, promoting white supremacy. He is also involved in the world of martial arts.

It is not known when Rundo entered Romania, but the authorities who detained him found a document identifying him as Robert Lazar Pavic.

US authorities have submitted a request for his provisional arrest with a view to extradition, saying that, between December 2016 and October 2018, in the State of California and other parts of the US, he conspired with others to use physical violence against individuals and groups that did not support their ideology.

Rundo was arrested in the US in 2018 in connection with violent events in California, but was released after charges were dismissed and he then left the country. According to the Anti-Defamation League, he attempted to create a white supremacist group in Eastern Europe.

Rundo is co-founder of the Rise Above Movement, RAM, a mixed martial arts club and allegedly posted videos and images online of them performing military hand-to-hand combat training, interspersed with pictures and videos of them assaulting people at political meetings, accompanied by messages in support of the ideology of white supremacy.

ProPublica investigated RAM and its footage shows Rundo being detained by law enforcement for violence at a political rally. It states that Rundo “pleaded guilty in the past to stabbing a Latino man five times in a gang fight.”

In an interview with a podcast promoting neo-Nazi ideology in September 2020, Rundo claimed to have left the US due to harassment and used anti-Semitic language about Hitler’s book “Mein Kampf”.

In 2020 Bellingcat revealed that Rundo was in Serbia and had posted videos on Telegram of himself and others writing supremacist messages on walls in Belgrade.

BIRN contacted Rundo in 2022 for an interview but it never happened. Later, he said he did not attend the scheduled interview in Sarajevo, Bosnia, because he was banned from entering the country.

Source : Balkaninsight