Unfair extradition laws
SIR – This Friday is Gary McKinnon’s birthday – the 10th on which the spectre of extradition to America has hung over him.
The British Government must recognise that our extradition relations with the rest of the world are out of kilter both with accepted practice in other countries and with the most basic concepts of fairness.
Since the Extradition Act came into force in 2004, there has been an exponential rise in requests for extradition from Britain. Yet Britain still does not allow for judicial consideration of the correct jurisdiction for trial. Defendants are almost totally unable to prevent extradition, despite a high likelihood of incarceration abroad, even where no charges have yet been brought in the requesting country.
Britain has a history of respect for principles such as habeas corpus and the presumption of innocence. Our extradition arrangements are a stain on this tradition.
We call upon the Government to look at the conclusions on extradition already reached by the Joint Committee on Human Rights, and to commit itself to primary legislation in the Queen’s Speech.
The first duty of any Government is the protection of its own citizens.
Mother of Gary McKinnon
Lord Carlile of Berriew QC (Lib Dem)
Lord Maginnis of Drumglass (UUP)
David Davis MP (Con)
Dominic Raab MP (Con)
Zac Goldsmith MP (Con)
Caroline Lucas MP (Green)
Kate Hoey MP (Lab)
Hywel Francis MP (Lab)
Chief Executive, Fair Trials International
One of the NatWest Three
Julia and Richard O’Dwyer
Chris and Elaine Tappin
Father of Babar, facing extradition
Tuesday, 7 February 2012
Unfair extradition laws - Telegraph