Success in Appeal Against Extradition to Sweden
Sonn Macmillan Walker represented a UK citizen who was wanted by the Swedish authorities to serve a sentence of imprisonment following a conviction for smuggling a quantity of cocaine into Sweden.
Our client had travelled with friends to attend the UEFA Europa League final in Stockholm in 2017 and was stopped by the police. After a search of the campervan our client was travelling in the police found a quantity of cocaine. He was arrested and later convicted. He received a prison sentence of 4 months.
It is worth noting that had his sentence been one day less he could not have been extradited.
Our client became aware that there was a European Arrest Warrant issued for him after he had exhausted all appeal options in Sweden. He made contact with us and we arranged for his surrender at Westminster Magistrates Court and he did not have to spend any time in custody.
At the final hearing his extradition was ordered. He appealed the decision of the District Judge.
He raised three grounds of appeal;
1. s2 Extradition Act 2003 (“EA 2003”) (concerning the description of the offence)
2. s10 EA 2003 (concerning dual criminality)
3. s21 EA 2003/Art 8 European Convention of Human Rights (“ECHR”) (right to family and private life).
He failed on the first and second ground but the appeal judge was persuaded by his challenge on the third under Article 8 of ECHR. He concluded that the District Judge had made two significant errors within his judgment in relation to our client and assessing his circumstances. The appeal judge took into consideration that our client assisted his ailing father and would stand to lose his job if extradited. He also had a partner of 9 years and supported his child from a previous relationship. Taking everything into consideration the appeal judge concluded that extradition would be disproportionate to our client and his Article 8 rights. He was therefore discharged.
Our client was very happy with the outcome of this case, one that had cause him and his family considerable anguish. Whilst he still needs to sort out the case in Sweden he is now in a position where he will not be forced to go back to Sweden.
The appeal hearing was conducted over a video link arrange by the High Court with all parties attending remotely.