NJ judge rules Portuguese fugitive must go back

May 17, 2011 - 3:43 PM

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — A federal judge in New Jersey has ruled that a Portuguese man facing a prison sentence for attempted murder can be sent back home.

But Manuel Albert Soares' (soh-AHR'-ez) attorney says he'll appeal the ruling, which means a resolution may not come for months.

Soares was in federal court in Newark on Tuesday. He was arrested in April after being pulled over for driving in a carpool lane with fewer than the required three passengers.

A Portuguese criminal court acquitted Soares in 2007 of trying to hire hit men to kill his ex-wife. But prosecutors appealed and Portugal's supreme court revoked the acquittal, sentencing Soares to four years and six months in prison.

Attorney Michael Orozco says his client left the country legally while the case was on appeal.