Court orders man’s surrender to Dutch authorities

A 36-year-old Dutch man arrested in Dublin during a Garda swoop on an alleged Kinahan gang property has had his surrender to Dutch authorities ordered by the High Court.

Naoufal Fassih, a Dutch citizen of Moroccan origin, is being sought in the Netherlands to face allegations of attempted murder, assault, possession of false documents, and money laundering, as well as for an alleged money-laundering offence here in Ireland.

The Amsterdam Public Prosecutor issued three European Arrest Warrants in respect of Mr Fassih on various dates in 2016. He was arrested by gardaí at an apartment believed to belong to the Kinahan crime gang on Dublin’s Baggott St last April. High Court extradition proceedings have been ongoing since.

In the High Court yesterday, Ms Justice Aileen Donnelly ordered the surrender of Mr Fassih to Dutch authorities on each of the three European Arrest Warrants.

Ms Justice Donnelly said she had considered all of the points of objection raised by Mr Fassih’s lawyers and was “quite satisfied to reject them all”. She awarded legal costs against Mr Fassih on foot of an application by Ronan Kennedy, counsel for the Minister for Justice.

Ms Justice Donnelly said the State should only be entitled to one day’s worth of costs because matters had been “staggered” for a period of time. Mr Fassih made no reaction when the judgment was delivered.

Mr Kennedy, for the State, said the first alleged offence related to a violent assault at a Dutch nightclub on October 5, 2012.

The prosecutor in Amsterdam said Mr Fassih is suspected of being involved in a fight that left several people injured, one seriously. The prosecutor wrote to the Irish authorities last month explaining a judge in Amsterdam had already discharged Mr Fassih on that charge due to a lack of evidence.

However, the prosecutor intends to appeal that judgment and wants Mr Fassih to be there for the appeal.

The second charge relates to over €10,000 in cash that Mr Fassih had on him when he was arrested in 2012. He was on social welfare at the time and refused to explain to Amsterdam police how he could be in possession of such a sum. The court heard he can be prosecuted under Dutch money laundering laws for failing to explain where the cash came from.

The third charge alleges he was in possession of a false passport.

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