Wednesday, August 06, 2008

McKinnon plea bargain offer not an abuse of process

The Times has an accessible law report on the McKinnon extradition case that the House of Lords decided last week.

"A plea bargain offered by a foreign prosecutor to an accused person whose extradition was sought, particularly if offered during a regulated process of plea-bargaining, did not constitute an abuse of process unless it was so extreme as to amount to a threat of unlawful action which imperilled the integrity of the extradition process.

The House of Lords so held, dismissing an appeal by the defendant, Gary McKinnon, from the dismissal by the Queen’s Bench Divisional Court (Lord Justice Maurice Kay and Mr Justice Goldring) (The Times April 19, 2007) of his appeal from:

(i) a decision of District Judge Nicholas Evans at Bow Street on May 10, 2006, to send his case to the Secretary of State for the Home Department on the ground, under section 87 of the Extradition Act 2003, that his extradition to the United States of America would not be incompatible with his human rights, and

(ii) the Home Secretary’s decision of July 4, 2006, to order his extradition at the request of the Government of the USA on offences alleging that between February 1, 2001, and March 19, 2002, he had gained unauthorised access to 97 US Government computers. "

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