Romania lacks “specialty protection”

In Romania v V, District Judge Goozée found that Romania does not provide adequate “specialty protection” and has discharged V from a European arrest warrant.

V’s extradition was sought pursuant to a European arrest warrant (‘EAW’) for an assault. The EAW stated that the sentence which had been imposed for the assault had been merged with a sentence for another offence, for which no detail was provided. The total combined sentenced was 1 year and 9 months’ imprisonment.

The Judge found that V had to be discharged from the unparticularised offence, precisely because no detail was given in the EAW.

According to section 17 of the Extradition Act 2003, a person who is extradited cannot be dealt with in the requesting state for any offence other than the offence or offences for which he is extradited.  This is known as “specialty protection”.

In turn, Romania was required to re-sentence V so that he would only serve a sentence for the offence of assault.

However, the Judge accepted expert evidence from Dr Chirita, a Romanian lawyer and academic specialising in criminal and human rights law that Romania is unable to resentence in such circumstances. This meant that V had to be discharged from the EAW in its entirety.

V was represented by Graeme Hall, who was in turn instructed by Elena Jacobs, Coomber Rich Solicitors.