A South African judge on Friday decided not to extradite a son-in-law of former President Nelson Mandela to the United States, saying he doubted the merits of the U.S. rape case.
Magistrate Tefo Muyambo said the son-in-law, Isaac Amuah, appeared to be the victim of an extortion scheme and struck the case off the court roll, the SAPA news agency reported.
Muyambo said the sexual assault case "would not have seen the light of day" if it had been presented to him by a South African prosecutor, SAPA said.
Amuah was charged with raping a U.S. woman in 1993 at his home in Connecticut. He went to South Africa before trial and never went back to the United States, law enforcement officials have said.
"American authorities need to get their house in order before they make accusations like this. However, the family is quite thankful and impressed and satisfied with the judgment," Tonny Sauls, a spokesman for Amuah told reporters.
U.S. embassy spokeswoman Elizabeth Kennedy Trudeau said: "The U.S. Embassy is aware of the case and will work with our South African colleagues on this matter."