To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if she will ensure that UK courts have the right to demand to see and assess evidence of a prima facie case to answer which has been collected by the requesting state in extradition cases after the transition period and (b) when that evidence is considered insufficient to refuse that request.
1 December 2020
In the absence of an agreement on Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice with the European Union, the UK’s extradition relations with EU Member States would be governed by the European Convention on Extradition 1957 and its Additional Protocols. The prima facie evidence requirement for extradition requests from States which are parties to the European Convention on Extradition was removed when the Convention came into force in the UK in May 1991. To introduce a prima facie case requirement would be incompatible with the Convention.
The Government’s approach to negotiations with the EU provides for extradition arrangements which are more streamlined than the European Convention on Extradition. The Government has not sought to introduce a prima facie case requirement, as to do so would render future arrangements with the EU less effective at bringing fugitives to justice than the Convention. However, the Government is seeking to introduce further safeguards beyond those included in the EAW Framework Decision. These would guarantee a judge in the UK the ability to dismiss a warrant from an EU Member State on the basis that it is a disproportionate interference with the requested person’s rights and/or if there has not yet been a decision to charge and try them.