4 July, 16

Extradition

Extradition is the process of another country seeking the return of a ‘requested person’ in order to either prosecute them for an offence or so that they can serve an outstanding sentence.

The request for extradition is made by the requesting state issuing a ‘European Arrest Warrant’ (EAW) which is then certified by the National Crime Agency. Once a person is wanted under an EAW they are liable to arrest. If arrested they will be detained by local police and transported to Westminster Magistrates’ Court for the next court session.

Extradition can be a very stressful and complicated process. There is no ‘presumption in favour of bail’ as in regular criminal cases and the arguments that can be run in opposition to extradition are often highly technical in nature. There is also the additional issue of a language barrier if the requested person is not originally from the UK. Legal advice is therefore essential to anyone facing extradition.

On top of this, extradition is a particularly fast-moving area of law that is constantly being re-shaped by new judgments and legislative amendments. If you require advice in connection with an extradition matter or you know someone who does, it is essential to instruct a firm with the appropriate experience and expertise.

GT Stewart Solicitors has a dedicated extradition department and a team of solicitors who regularly deal with extradition cases at both Magistrates’ Court and High Court level. We have a reputation for tenaciously pursuing cases in the appellate courts, one example being the widely reported case of FK [2012] UKSC 25 which was pursued up to the Supreme Court where the client’s appeal succeeded. This case changed the way in which the Article 8 rights of children are addressed in extradition cases.

We take pride in pursuing every avenue of challenge to an EAW and we work closely with the top extradition barristers in London. We also have an excellent understanding of how to use expert evidence successfully and a catalogue of specialist expert witnesses including child psychologists, anti-trafficking organisations and experts on foreign prison conditions.

We undertake work both privately and on a publicly funded basis, and we will be happy to speak with you about whether Legal Aid is available for your case. If you have an extradition matter please contact us to discuss how we can help.

Reported Extradition cases in 2015

  • Szegfu v Hungary [2015] EWHC 1764 (admin)
  • Pluciennik v Poland [2015] EWHC 1933 (Admin)
  • Granauskas v Lithuania [2015] EWHC 1115
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