Katy joined Sonn Macmillan Walker in 2016 to expand the extradition team. She originally qualified as a barrister in 2008 and cross-qualified to become a solicitor in 2011, gaining her Higher Rights of Audience in 2012. Katy conducts criminal defence work in the magistrates’ court and crown court. She is a committee member of the Defence Extradition Lawyers Association and a member of Extradition Lawyers Association and is listed in the Legal 500 for extradition and crime. Katy is ranked as a Band 1 extradition lawyer in Chambers and Partners, where practitioners noted:
Katy Smart of Sonn Macmillan Walker has “exceptional knowledge and experience of extradition law” and “knows how to present her cases.” She has particular experience fighting extradition requests which are politically motivated and acting for individuals in representations to INTERPOL.
Katy has a wealth of experience in high profile extradition and an established track record of successfully fighting extradition requests. She has defended hundreds of extradition cases and specialises in politically motivated requests.
She has considerable experience at defending European Arrest Warrants but has particular specialisation in fighting requests from Russia, Ukraine, UAE, and USA, which usually involve complex litigation, require expert evidence and witnesses from foreign jurisdictions. She prides herself on the network of experts she has created to assist in resisting extradition and the support she can give to vulnerable clients. She also regularly acts as an advocate for her clients in extradition hearings.
In addition, Katy advises individuals who wish to make representations to INTERPOL and has assisted in successfully defending proceedings in foreign jurisdictions, coordinating, instructing and liaising with lawyers on behalf of her client.
She has been described in professional directories as ‘resilient, committed to her clients and a good strategist’. In the 2016 edition of Chambers and Partners she is ranked as a band 2 Lawyer and sources say ‘she is exceptional and she works tirelessly.’ In the 2017 Edition of Chambers and Partners she is described as ‘excellent’ and an extradition specialist who offers extensive experience in politically motivated proceedings, including those emanating from countries such as Russia, the USA and Ukraine. Interviewees praise her strong client care skills and case preparation.
Areas of Expertise
Politicians and businessmen not criminals
Katy's recent successes
Czech Republic v C
C was arrested in respect of an EAW issued by the Czech Republic for a significant sentence to serve in respect of a conviction for fraud. C had 4 children and her partner was not deemed competent to look after the children on his own. Using a number of experts including a child psychologist to assess the impact on all of the children her extradition was stopped as it would have been disproportionate interference with her family life.
France v K
K was arrested without notice pursuant to an EAW issued by France accusing him of a fraud worth 5millions Euros. The conduct was said to have occurred in 2009. K was an English citizen who had health concerns and a family life in the UK. The District Judge found that extradition was barred because the conduct did not constitute and offence in the UK, surrender would be oppressive due to the passage of time and that extradition was disproportionate in respect of his private life in the UK. This decision was not appealed.
S v Poland
S was requested by Poland to serve a sentence of 11 months in respect of a fraud conviction from 2008. The sentence was originally suspended and activated for non-payment of a fine. S was settled in the UK, had not committed any further offences and had a young family. Mr Justice Singh over turned the District Judges’ decision on the basis it would constitute a disproportionate interference with his private and family life.
Portugal v C
G was arrested pursuant to an EAW from Portugal. With our assistance, his lawyers in Portugal were able to secure an acquittal in his absence and the warrant was withdrawn without the requirement to surrender to the requesting state.
Romania v M
M was sought to serve an outstanding sentence of 4 years and six months imposed in his absence for offending that had occurred 10 years prior to his arrest in the UK, the Romanian authorities failed to provide an explanation of the delays. M had lead an impressive law abiding life in the UK and a young family who were settled in the UK. Extradition was found to be barred by virtue of the passage of time and the disproportionate interference it would have with M’s family and private life.
M was contacted by the British Police and invited for interview in respect of an allegation of a serious sexual assault on a British national in Germany. The German prosecutor had submitted a request for questioning to the British authorities. SMW were instructed to assist in respect of that matter. We co-ordinated the matters both here and in Germany, assisting our German lawyers to put together a defence. Following this submission the German prosecutor closed the case without charges. The strategy decisions taken in this case were crucial to getting a swift conclusion in our clients favour, without the need for an interview in the UK.
USA v B – instructed in relation to an appeal to the USA where civil commitment is an issue to be litigated upon.
Ukraine v SB – instructed in a politically motivated request from the Ukraine with simultaneous immigration proceedings.
G & S v Paraguay – Representing both defendants in an application to reopen the appeal following further receipt of new evidence.