Fiona joined Sonn Macmillan Walker in 2017 and is now justifiably regarded as one of the foremost specialists and a leading light in extradition law.
Fiona is “incredibly smart, dedicated and relentless”. She “picks things up quickly and instinctively knows the next steps to take in a case” and “is exceptionally responsive and goes out of her way for her clients”. Since 2021, Fiona had been a committee member of the Defence Extradition Lawyers’ Forum (DELF), an international organisation which aims to represent defence lawyers practising in extradition. Fiona was noted as an ‘Associate to Watch’ in Chambers and Partners 2024 and a ‘Key Lawyer’ in the Legal 500 2024.
Fiona has extensive experience in successfully defending extradition requests involving a full spectrum of issues in the Magistrates’ Court and on appeal before the High Court, Supreme Court and European Court of Human Rights. Fiona has provided strategic advice and representation to individuals facing extradition to jurisdictions across the world often involving complex factual issues concerning human rights and prison conditions. Fiona undertakes both legally aided and privately funded work. Fiona’s clients range from vulnerable sole carers to high profile individuals and cases that deal with politically motivated requests.
Fiona has successfully defeated extradition requests from the USA, Republic of South Korea, and Turkey as well as most European and EU member states. The offences contained in the requests can range from large scale Ponzi scheme frauds and business crime to drug trafficking and murder. These cases often can raise serious issues such as political motivation and complex legal issues involving dual criminality and forum.
Equally as important, Fiona is frequently instructed to deal with European Arrest Warrants where the offending is often less serious but the risk to the individual is great. Fiona is adept at dealing with complex issues such as people trafficking; torture and PTSD. When these matters arise in a case, often where there are mental health issues and other vulnerabilities, they require a sensitive and experienced approach. Fiona has successfully advised in the some of the most significant cases involving prison conditions or risk to life in the Requesting State.
Fiona can also provide strategic advice to individuals who are subject to Interpol red notices and can assist in making representations for their removal.
Latvia v RN (2021) – Our client was discharged from extradition proceedings following a successful argument that his extradition to Latvia was a disproportionate interference to his article 8 rights.
R v X (2021) – Acquitted of worrying livestock contrary to s1(1) of the Dogs (Protection of Livestock) Act 1953. Click here to read more.
R v Z (2017)– Acquitted first day of trial.
Mr Z was accused of attacking a couple at Shoreditch House in London. He faced one count of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, one count of unlawful wounding and one count of affray. The couple failed to appear at Court citing ‘a family emergency’. The prosecution made an unsuccessful application to adjourn following critical social media research conducted by defence proving the complainant was on holiday. Acquittal secured. For full details please click here.
R v S – Possession of disguised firearm. Suspended Sentence Order secured.
Mr S was seen by police officers to be in possession of a stun gun which he discharged giving off an electric shock. An offence of this nature attracts a mandatory minimum sentence of 5 years imprisonment. Although this offending crossed the custody threshold we successfully persuaded the Court to suspend the 2 year sentence.
R v A – Supply of a list A article (cannabis) in prison. Community Order secured.
A was observed on CCTV at HMP Brixton supplying cannabis to a prisoner. Recent case law dictated that the offence of conveying drugs into prison under the Prison Act to a serving prisoner was an aggravating feature of the offending, An offence of this nature attracts an immediate custodial sentence with a starting point of 1 year. We successfully persuaded the Court to impose a Community Order.
R v F – Supply Class A drug. Acquittal secured.
Mr F was found in possession of 20+ wraps of cocaine, a substantial amount of cash, and multiple mobile phones. Acquitted of all offences he contested, having already entered a guilty plea to simple possession of cocaine.
R v D – PWITS Class A drug. Community Order secured.
D was found in possession of 20+ wraps heroin and cocaine, a number of mobile phones and a large quantity of cash. An offence of this nature attracts a sentencing starting point of 4.5 years imprisonment. Following mitigation, we successfully persuaded the judge to impose a community order.
Poland v S – Extradition refused.
Mr S was arrested on a conviction warrant to serve a sentence for two offences of supply of a controlled drug in Poland. Polish authorities sought his extradition to serve the sentence. The District Judge upheld our argument that there would be a disproportionate interference with his rights to private and family life and discharged him from the extradition proceedings.
For full details please click here.
Latvia v G – Extradition refused.
Ms G was arrested on conviction warrant to serve a sentence of 4 years for 3 offences of supplying class A drugs in Latvia. Ms was a single mother to her 7-year-old daughter. The District Judge upheld our argument that there would be a disproportionate interference with her rights to private and family life and discharged her from the extradition proceedings.
What people are saying
“I am writing to you, to express something that simple words in an email can scarcely convey – our profound and heartfelt gratitude for everything you have done for us. Your unwavering support, expertise, and compassion have been more than just professional guidance; they have been a source of strength and comfort in one of the most challenging periods of our lives. Thank you, once again, for being our pillars of strength.” Client, 2023.
“Stand out individuals are Katy Smart and Fiona Haddadeen, for their excellent work and deep knowledge in the field of extradition.” – Legal 500 Rankings, 2024
“Katy Smart and Fiona Haddadeen stand out. They cover every angle, have a strong grasp of this complex area of law and how political changes in the world impact on extradition.”- Legal 500 Rankings, 2024
“She is sensitive to the needs of clients and is prepared to go the extra mile.” Chambers and Partners Rankings, 2024
“Fiona is really committed and really gives her all. She managed an almost unmanageable case load.” Chambers and Partners Rankings, 2024
“She’s very knowledgeable about the law and very collaborative.” Chambers and Partners Rankings, 2024
“We can’t thank you enough for SMW – we are thankful for David, Fiona and Georgina for their hard work! Especially to Ms. Fiona Haddaddeen! She is incredibly smart, dedicated, relentless and always made us feel comfortable and cared for even during her off days! David and Fiona both were also very strategic in putting such a stellar team of counsels and experts for our case. Having SMW representing us as our lawyer has been Godsend and the best decision we’ve ever made! Thank you!” Client, 2022.