Laura Herbert wins extradition appeal after Polish Judicial Authority issues warrant for a sentence already served.

13 January 2022

Laura Herbert, instructed by Laura Hayward (Taylor Rose) represented a Polish client wanted on an EAW from Poland for two judgments. Her client maintained he had served the sentence for one of the judgments in the warrant. The Polish Judicial Authority, having been asked to confirm the sentence by the CPS, maintained in three separate letters that he had not.

The defence team obtained an expert report from Poland, and having reviewed the case file, the expert discovered the Polish court had made 2 mistakes in her clients case:

  • they had failed, due to a typing error in the sentence aggregation to take in to account a whole year he had served in prison, and
  • failed to take into account time spent in prison for another sentence in its entirety.

The Magistrates’ court relied on the Polish authority's assertions, but on appeal the Polish authority finally conceded that the sentence had been served.

On appeal Cranston J, despite a sentence of 9 months outstanding on the remaining judgment, allowed the appeal under Article 8 ECHR due to the impact of extradition on his private life.

The Judge made the finding that there were exceptional circumstances in this case; he had grave concerns that the Magistrates’ court had been misled of 4 separate occasions by the Polish Judicial Authority which meant the public interest in extradition was very much diminished. Further, the Judge found that the emotional interference of fighting this case from the very first arrest was substantial, and therefore meant that the warrant in its entirety should be discharged as it would be disproportionate to return him. 

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