Extradition - EAW Victory on Article 3

30.09.13 | |

In what may be a legal first, a District Judge today discharged a European Arrest Warrant on the basis that there was a real risk that if returned to Poland, the prison system could not protect a black African man from inhuman and degrading treatment contrary to Article 3 ECHR. David Rhodes, instructed by Richard Easton of GT Stewart solicitors, represented Jose Simao in defeating the EAW by Poland. Mr Simao, a black Angolan was sought for extradition to Poland to serve the remainder of a sentence for sexual offences against a white female child. Accordingly, he was in a special category of prisoners at very high risk of violence by prisoners and guards. Mr Simao gave ‘painfully truthful’ evidence of the ill-treatment he had received whilst in a Polish prison previously. Expert evidence was called, via Skype, from a Polish professor of criminal law as to the current risks facing ethnic minority prisoners. The Court concluded that whilst there were safeguards in place, the overcrowding problem in Polish prisons meant that, in practice, those safeguards were ‘illusory’. In this particular case, therefore, there was a real risk of a violation of Article 3 ECHR.

 

Click here to read the full judgment.

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