Brexit raised as date set for extradition proceedings

The High Court will hear arguments on the potential consequences of Britain’s decision to leave the European Union later this month in the context of extradition proceedings in which fair trial rights will be argued owing to delay.

The case concerns a 78-year-old Irish man, who is wanted to face prosecution in Britain on 10 alleged offences including rape, attempted rape, indecent assault and indecency of a child alleged to have been committed in the Camden area of London as well as Essex on dates between 1960 and 1973.

The Dublin man, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, denies the allegations contending that they are “scurrilous” and “totally groundless”.

He was arrested by gardaí last October on foot of a European Arrest Warrant issued by a Westminster Magistrates Court in September 2015 and has been on bail since that date.

The man’s counsel, Patrick Gageby, brought a motion yesterday, on notice to the Justice Minister, to amend his grounds of objection as a consequence of the recent referendum.

Mr Gageby said his client was at real risk of having an unfair trial in the UK due to the lapse of time.

Counsel for the Minister for Justice, Ronan Kennedy, said the court should consider the case against the law as it stood today.

In her ruling, Ms Justice Donnelly said there was possibly a preliminary matter to be dealt with and she allowed Mr Gageby to pursue the point to the extent that the court can address the issue as to whether the matter needs to be considered at all “as a preliminary issue”. The matter was listed for hearing on July 29.

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