Evidence? National sovereignty? Those concepts are so 20th Century!
In total 1,032 people – almost three a day – were detained and extradited by British police on the orders of European prosecutors in the 12 months to April, up from 683 in 2008-09. The Home Office expects a further 70 per cent rise, to 1,700 cases, next year.
The increase will fuel growing political concern about the “unfair” and “disproportionate” nature of the warrants, which British courts have little power to challenge.
It comes as the case of Christopher Tappin, a suburban golf club captain accused of arms smuggling, sparked separate controversy about “unbalanced” extradition arrangements with the US.
David Blunkett, the former home secretary who introduced the European warrants, admitted he had been “insufficiently sensitive” about how they could be “overused”. David Davis, his former Tory shadow, last night called for a “review and reform” of the extradition system.
The number of European Arrest Warrant detentions in Britain has risen 43-fold since 2004, when there were only 24 across the year. Many of those detained are accused of relatively minor crimes such as possessing cannabis or leaving petrol stations without paying.
They can spend long periods in jail – here and abroad – for crimes which might not even have been prosecuted in Britain. They can also be seized for offences which are not crimes in Britain.
Foreign prosecutors do not have to present evidence to the British courts, just demand the person be “surrendered.”
Read more at the Telegraph.