Extradition to Moldova refused due to high levels of inter-prisoner violence

On 24 May 2021, Deputy Senior District Judge Ikram discharged GS from an extradition request issued by Moldova due to Moldova’s inhuman and degrading prison conditions.

GS was sought by Moldova to serve a 10 year sentence imposed for an offence of theft of tinned goods worth USD 500,000.

GS argued that extradition would not be compatible with his rights under Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protects against torture, and inhuman and degrading treatment.

In particular, GS argued that there was strong evidence that - with the tacit support of the Moldovan prisons’ administration - prisons are run by a criminal sub-culture whereby “superior” prisoners expose “inferior” prisoners to overcrowded and insalubrious cells, as well as intimidation, extortion and violence.

Judge Ikram found that the Assurances provided by the Moldovan authorities to safeguard GS against these risks of inhuman and degrading treatment were wholly inadequate, and he therefore discharged GS from the extradition request.

GS was represented by Graeme Hall, led by Jonathan Hall QC of 6KWB; and instructed by Katy Smart of Sonn Macmillan Walker Solicitors.