Hearing attempts to untangle summons

Feb. 25, 2013 at 4:49 PM
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MILWAUKEE, Feb. 25 (UPI) -- A U.S. judge gave an extension to investigate whether a summons allegedly served to the chief minister of Punjab, India, was a case of mistaken identity.

U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman granted plaintiffs' attorneys and additional 30 days at a hearing involving Parkash Singh Badal, the chief minister of Punjab, who was sued for alleged persecution of Sikhs in India by the human rights group Sikhs for Justice, while Badal was in Wisconsin in August to attend a wedding, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported Monday.

Two days before his arrival, a gunman attacked the Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wis., killing six people and himself, and Badal found himself thrust into the news as he met with survivors and reporters.

A process server who went to a community service at a high school to serve Badal with a summons, may have given the court papers to the wrong person, the newspaper said.

In testimony last week, Martin O'Toole, an agent with the U.S. State Department's Diplomatic Security Service, said Badal had never visited the high school during his five-day stay in Wisconsin but process server Christopher Kratochvil, 43, said he served the papers after neither the man Kratochvil thought was Badal, nor the two people with whom he was standing, denied the man in question was the indented recipient.

Adelman isn't expected to rule on the motion to dismiss the charges until May, the newspaper noted.

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