Essex lorry deaths: Irishman to be extradited to UK to face manslaughter charges

The High Court has approved the extradition of Irishman Eamon Harrison to the UK to face manslaughter charges.

Essex lorry deaths: Irishman to be extradited to UK to face manslaughter charges

Additional reporting by Olga Cronin

The High Court has approved the extradition of Irishman Eamon Harrison to the UK to face manslaughter charges.

Mr Harrison from Mayobridge, Co Down appeared at the High Court in Dublin on Friday in relation to a European Arrest Warrant seeking his extradition to the UK.

The 23-year-old is wanted for his alleged role in transporting the trailer in which the bodies of eight women and 31 men, all Vietnamese nationals, were found on an industrial park in Grays, Essex, in the early hours of October 23.

The court previously heard that Harrison is accused of 41 offences – 39 counts of manslaughter, which carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, one human trafficking offence, and one count of assisting unlawful immigration.

Mr Justice Donald Binchy said that after receiving comprehensive arguments from both sides, he decided to approve the extradition.

Justice Binchy said he received "very comprehensive" submissions from Mr Harrison's legal team and that of the Department of Justice.

He said, in light of these submissions, he found there was nothing to "preclude" the surrender of Mr Harrison and that he had a lengthy written judgement explaining his decision.

However he said this will not be ready for release until Monday, January 27.

He said he would not summarise his 50-page judgement for fear of omitting something.

Tony McGillicuddy BL, for Mr Harrison, requested that Mr Justice Binchy defer making the order until Mr Harrison's defence team have time to consider the judgement.

The court heard that once an order is officially made, a defence team has 15 days to make an appeal.

In turn, Mr Justice Binchy said he was deferring making the order until Tuesday, February 4 and adjourned the matter until that date at 10am.

Mr Harrison was arrested at Dublin Port a few days after the bodies were found in a lorry in Essex on October 23.

He is alleged to have driven the container to the port of Zeebrugge in Belgium, and later signed the shipping notice for it.

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