Wednesday, 24 November 2010
No Extradition Of Kieron Doran
On the 5th of November, after an 8 month battle Republican prisoner Kieron Doran lost his high court challenge to prevent his extradition to France.
Tried and sentenced in his absence to 4 years imprisonment, for conspiracy to commit terrorist offences, Kieron was not notified he was on trial, or given the opportunity to defend himself.
His and Gary’s only crime was to have travelled to France on a holiday in 2003.
From the outset of the trial it was made clear there was direct involvement by British intelligence agency MI5 in the trial, and that it was falsely alleged the men had links to an arms cache which was discovered in Brittany.
In the absence of any evidence physical, or otherwise to support this claim, kieron and his co accused Gary Roche where sentenced on the word of a special branch officer, who was flown in and who gave uncorroborated and false evidence that both men where members of the IRA whilst in France.
This evidence was amazingly accepted; despite the fact an Irish court had previously ruled it not to be the case. The trial was described by French lawyers as a political show trial. Kieron was arrested in January of this year and imprisoned in Portlaoise Jail pending a high court challenge against his extradition.
In was explained to Kieron at the outset of the Irish trial, that he was to be extradited on a European arrest warrant, and on a ticked box offence, which would overrule any Irish, constitutional, or family laws which would have prevented his surrender.
It was basically rendition, as opposed to extradition.
What transpired in the Irish high court over the following months was tantamount to throwing Kieron’s constitutional rights out the window, in order to facilitate MI5.
Circumstances in which surrender is prohibited
• Under Irish law a citizen cannot be extradited for an offence which does not correspond to an offence under Irish law, despite this being the case.
THIS WAS OVERRULED.
• Under family law it sates that if the extradition of an Irish citizen will have a disproportionate effect on his/her family they cannot be surrendered.
Despite Kieron being married with seven children, all under the age of 12, and being the sole provider for them.
THIS WAS OVERRULED.
• Where final judgement has already been given in Ireland or another Member State for the offence, despite this being the case.
THIS WAS OVERRULED.
• After being informed he could not win the case, here or in France, and after resigning himself to this fact, Kieron applied, which is his right under European law, to serve the sentence here close to his family.
THIS WAS REFUSED BY THE MINISTER FOR JUSTICE.
• Kieron applied for leave to appeal these blatant contraventions of his Irish and human rights
THIS WAS REFUSED
Once extradited, Kieron will be jailed in a French prison system, recently described by the council of European rights commissioner, as "unacceptable" overcrowded, and dilapidated. He will have no phone contact whatsoever with his family, and limited access to visits. This is one of the worst cases of State persecution of an Irish republican, to grace the courts, and we would implore people republican or otherwise to highlight this case, however they possibly can.
COUNCIL OF EUROPE AGAIN SLAMS FRENCH PRISON CONDITIONS
STRASBOURG, (AFP) - The Council of Europe's human rights commissioner slammed Thursday as "unacceptable" conditions in France's overcrowded and dilapidated jails, where some 90 inmates have committed suicide this year.
Thomas Hammarberg said in the latest of a string of criticisms by the pan-European watchdog that the high level of suicides in French prisons is "a symptom of the structural deficiencies in the penitentiary system."
He singled out "the unacceptable living conditions faced by many detainees, who have to cope with overcrowding, lack of privacy, dilapidated facilities and substandard hygiene."
Hammarberg also said he was concerned by the harsh treatment of defendants and inmates by the authorities and the courts, including pre-trial detention on the basis of the risk of danger.
"Dangerousness, on the basis of which preventive detention is ordered, is not a clear legal or scientific concept," he said.
Such practices "must remain the last resort, and other recidivism prevention measures should be applied in the first instance."
He also attacked recent French measures to check youth crime, saying "the problem of juvenile delinquency will not be solved by imposing harsher penalties."
"A successful policy should entail measures facilitating prevention, rehabilitation and the social integration of young people in difficulty," he said.
Regarding France's policies on illegal immigration, he said the fixing of quotas for repatriation of migrants lacking residence papers, "raises serious human rights concerns."
Hammarberg criticised in particular arrests of immigrants outside schools their children attend or at regional government office while they seek to regularise their position.
Hammarberg's report, following a visit to France in May, is the latest in a series of such attacks by the pan-European rights watchdog, which charges that the treatment of French convicts is inhumane and degrading.
There are currently more than 63,000 prisoners in France held in cells built for 51,000.
Union leaders accuse Justice Minister Rachida Dati of overloading the nation's prison system with her tough-on-crime approach while failing to strengthen efforts at rehabilitation.
The International Observatory of Prisons (OIP), another watchdog group, also says France needs to change its approach.
The justice ministry says it is adding more than 1,000 jobs in the prison system over the next year and is drafting a bill to improve conditions.