The action has been brought by Julian Myerscough, aged 54, with an address at Alexandra Rd, Lowestoft, Suffolk. He arrived in Ireland shortly after he was found guilty by a jury of 13 counts of making indecent images of a child at Ipswich Crown Court on September 30, 2015.
He was also found guilty of three counts of breaching a Sexual Offences Prevention Order imposed on him following a previous conviction for similar offences. He attended his trial but failed to return after lunch when the jury reached its verdict. He was convicted in his absence.
After it was discovered he had travelled to Ireland, Myerscough was arrested at a Dublin hotel on foot of a European arrest warrant issued by the English authorities. He had opposed the extradition.
Last month, Ms Justice Aileen Donnelly made an order for Myerscough’s extradition. Rejecting all his arguments, she said there was no reason for her to make orders refusing to surrender Myerscough to the British authorities.
At Monday’s sitting of the High Court, Myerscough, represented by Kieran Kelly, asked Mr Justice Robert Haughton for an inquiry under Article 40.4 of the Constitution into the legality of his detention in custody in Ireland pending his extradition to Britain. Counsel said the application, which was made on an ex parte basis, concerned Myerscough’s desire to appeal Ms Justice Donnelly’s judgment to the Court of Appeal.
Following her judgment, Ms Justice Donnelly refused to give him permission to appeal. Myerscough’s legal team says the denial of an opportunity to appeal is unconstitutional and contravenes EU law.
Mr Kelly told the court that his client is likely to be returned to England some day this week.
Mr Justice Haughton adjourned the case to today’s vacation sitting of the High Court. The application for an inquiry is to be heard in the presence of lawyers for the State, the judge directed.
During the extradition hearing, Myerscough’s lawyers argued that he should not be extradited because he had not received a fair trial in England.
Myerscough claimed a key police witness, whose testimony was used to convict him, was not available for cross-examination during trial. This amounted to a breach of his right to a fair trial under Section 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights. He also claimed he had been spat at and threatened after his home address was revealed by the media. He said he lived in fear of death and the police in England were not able to protect him.
The State said there was nothing preventing his surrender from taking place.
The European arrest warrant seeking Myerscough’s surrender stated that charges were brought against him after a USB stick and a computer seized by police at a house he lived at in September 2013 were found to contain a number of indecent images of children. The possession and making of these images breached a Sexual Offences Prevention Order, of 10 years’ duration, made against him in December 2010.
That order was imposed on him in respect of three counts of making indecent photographs of children and two counts of possession of indecent images of children, the warrant further stated.