Despite finishing his prison sentence two years ago, Noriega has since remained in a Florida jail where he has been fighting extradition.

His lawyers argued that he was a prisoner of war and should be sent back to Panama.

"No one from the state or justice department has had the common courtesy to call us and tell us," Frank Rubino, Noriega's principal lawyer in the US, said.

Noriega ruled Panama as a head of the military from 1983 to 1990.