Extradition to Italy barred by fair trial rights’ considerations

District Judge Snow has refused a request from Italy for the extradition of G for offences of  inter alia marital rape finding that extradition would not accord with fair trial rights’ norms.

G’s extradition is sought by Italy to serve an aggregate sentence of 4 years and 6 months for offences of marital rape, “ill treatment” and failure to pay alimony dating from 2006.

The Judge concluded that G was not informed by the Italian authorities about the most serious allegation of rape. Despite this, the Italian authorities continued to prosecute and convict G in his absence. The Judge found that extradition had to be refused as G was not deliberately absent from his trial in circumstances where Italy would not provide him with a retrial upon extradition. In so doing:

  • The Judge dismissed Italy’s arguments that there was a sufficient nexus between the allegation of “ill treatment” - about which G was aware - and the offence of marital rape, for him to be considered deliberately absent for both offences.

  • The Judge accepted the defence expert evidence, provided by Professor Andrea Saccucci, that the Italian legal regime under which G was prosecuted breached Article 6 ECHR, which protects the right to a fair trial.

In relation to the offence of failure to pay alimony, extradition was refused as this is not an offence contrary to the law of England and Wales.

In relation to the offence of “ill-treatment”, the Judge found that extradition would breach the Article 8 ECHR private and family life rights of G and his young children.

G was immediately released from custody having been arrested in May 2020.

G was represented by Graeme Hall who was in turn instructed by Atabak Eshaghian of Eshaghian & Co.

Professor Saccucci is an Associate member of Chambers.