Will Peru Extradite Billionaire Lead Magnate Ira Rennert?

Ira Rennert owns the nation's largest inhabited residence.<a href="http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ira_Rennert_house.jpg">Wikimedia Commons</a>

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.


A Peruvian judge has threatened to extradite bad-boy industrialist and private-equity bigwig Ira Rennert, according to a recent story in Peru’s La Republica. Since January, the American billionaire has repeatedly refused to travel to Peru to respond to charges of defrauding the Peruvian government in connection with his management of Doe Run Peru, a lead smelter in the Andes that has poisoned a surrounding town.

According to La Republica, Rennert has claimed that he is “too occupied with his business” to address the charges in person. He asked Peruvian judge Martha Flores Gallardo to travel to New York instead.

Though there’s no saying whether Peru will officially try and force Rennert to show up, the judge seems to be taking that option seriously. In a September 5 legal filing, she wrote that a no-show by Rennert “will result in extradition proceedings prescribed by law.”

Rennert doesn’t seem worried. “There is no outstanding arrest warrant, and there is no possibility of one being issued by the court in Lima,” Rennert spokesman Jim McCarthy said in a written statement. He declined to elaborate.

If Rennert were to be extradited, it would certainly burnish his status as America’s most despised billionaire. His haters include Wall Street regulators (who essentially banished him from the securities industry), environmentalists (he once owned the company that manufactured the Humvee, as well as America’s dirtiest mining company), his own investors (who sued him for fraud), and his slightly-less-rich neighbors in the Hamptons (who dislike his 110,000-square-foot residential compound—the nation’s largest—not to mention the industrial-grade helicopter Rennert uses to come and go). For more on Rennert and his copters, read my recent story about upper-class warfare in the Hamptons.

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate