High Court appeal of Lauri Love’s extradition

High Court appeal of Lauri Love's extradition

AnonUK Radio Guests Kevin Michael Allan and Raymond Johansen (Pirate Parties International / PPI).

t0pG3ar Live - Global internet activist conversation.

29 November 2017 00:00


Forum Bar on trial as Lauri Love appeal hearing opens at Royal Courts of Justice.

#TrialAtHome Court dates for Lauri Love: 29th - 30th Nov London UK.

32 year old electrical engineering student Lauri Love’s appeal against extradition to the United States, where he faces solitary confinement and a potential 99 year prison sentence, opens today in court 4 at the Royal Courts of Justice. The appeal, which is scheduled to last one and a half days, will be argued before the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Burnett of Maldon and Mr Justice Ouseley.

Last year District Judge Nina Tempia, sitting at Westminster Magistrates’ Court, ruled that Love - who has diagnoses of Asperger Syndrome, major depression and severe antibiotic-resistant eczema - should be extradited, despite finding that there is a high risk he would take his own life. Love’s case is regarded as the key test case for the forum bar, a defence to extradition which was introduced in the wake of the Gary McKinnon case to protect vulnerable defendants, who could be better tried at home.

Human rights organisation Liberty, who have long campaigned for improvements in UK-US extradition arrangements to protect British defendants, are intervening in Love’s appeal. Their case, focusing on how the forum bar has operated in practice, will be argued by Alex Bailin QC and Aaron Watkins of Matrix Chambers.

Emma Norton, Head of Casework for Liberty, said:

“If someone is accused of having committed a crime here in the UK, this is where they should stand trial. Extradition powers exist to stop fugitives escaping justice - not pack vulnerable Britons off to foreign courts and unfamiliar legal systems.”

«When Gary McKinnon was spared a similar fate, Theresa May introduced reforms to prevent extradition if the alleged crime took place here. But this protection has yet to be exercised. Now is the time - the stakes could not be higher.»

Solicitor: “Love’s case is exceptional.”

Suffolk-based Love faces extradition requests from three separate US judicial districts for his alleged participation in #OpLastResort, the series of online protests that followed the death of internet pioneer Aaron Swartz in early 2013. Love was initially arrested in October of that year for the purposes of a UK investigation, which did not result in any charge.

Lauri Love’s appeal will be argued by Edward Fitzgerald QC and Ben Cooper, both of Doughty Street Chambers, who are instructed by Kaim Todner Solicitors. Both Edward and Ben previously defended Gary McKinnon, also instructed by Kaim Todner.

Kevin Kendridge, Solicitor Advocate and Head of the Extradition Department, at Kaim Todner Solicitors, said:

“Lauri Love’s case is exceptional because the Crown Prosecution Service has chosen not to prosecute here in England, unlike in every other recent similar case involving cross border hacking allegations between England and the US, with the exception of Gary McKinnon whos extradition was blocked by Theresa May on article 3 grounds.”

In Lauri’s case the District Judge ruled he suffered from a "severe disability" because of his autism, that his physical health causes him "severe problems" and that extradition exposes him to a high risk of suicide, and that this risk derives from his mental condition and so is beyond his own control.

“All of the alleged criminality took place here in England. The CPS routinely prosecutes such conduct where the effects of the cybercrime are felt in the US. It would be inconsistent with CPS Policy to send this individual, who is acutely vulnerable, away from the essential support of his parents. He will be remanded in custody in isolation, far from his family, in a austere prison regime as he faces trial in three separate US states. By contrast, the totality of the conduct alleged can be readily prosecuted before a single English Crown Court. Here he would be bailed and supported throughout the criminal process (just as Kane Gamble was bailed by Leicester Crown Court even after pleading Guilty to hacking the CIA and FBI).”

“The interests of justice would benefit from Love remaining fit to stand trial through the support of his family.”

Love’s case has been the subject of intense public concern among parliamentarians, autism campaigners and the wider public. Earlier this month, 73 Members of Parliament - among them Barry Sheerman, Heidi Allen and Culture Minister Matt Hancock, signing in his capacity as Lauri Love’s local MP - called on the Prime Minister and Attorney General to make representations to the United States for Love to be tried in the UK instead.

The National Autistic Society have supported Love in his case, by calling for the courts to take his autism into account.

A spokesperson said: “We know that autistic people who get caught up in the criminal justice system can be extremely vulnerable. The criminal justice system can often overlook the additional needs of autistic defendants and
offenders, leaving them without necessary support at a time of possible high anxiety.”

“Autistic people may struggle to understand or communicate with others or cope with new environments. If they don’t receive support in prison they risk developing complex and long-term mental health problems, and often cannot benefit from programmes to prepare them for release if they are not adapted for their needs.”

“We believe autistic people need fair access to justice which takes their autism into account and, where a conviction is made, people get support throughout their sentence.”

The Courage Foundation runs Lauri Love’s official defence fund.

Official website - The Courage Foundation

Tor Project

Tor protects your privacy

Tor Browser is an easy-to-use, portable package of Tor. By downloading and using Tor, you can protect the people who need anonymity, like activists, journalists and bloggers...

Tor Project

Keywords

Lauri Love Podcast UK

Translation

Higinio Ochoa on hacker culture

Higinio Ochoa on hacker culture

Higinio Ochoa on hacker culture, being an Anonymous hacktivist and getting arrested by the FBI, and ideas about the future of the Internet. Higinio "w0rmer" Ochoa was once upon a time banned from using the Internet by the FBI. This was because as a (...)


Jeremy Hammond's Support Network

Jeremy Hammond’s Support Network

Jeremy Hammond is a member of the hacktivist network Anonymous, and a gifted computer programer whose case has attracted the attention of activists, civil libertarians and those concerned about the rights of whistleblowers. He is currently spending a (...)


An Ode to the Revolutionary Fighter

An Ode to the Revolutionary Fighter

We are not a crowd of nodding fools. We are not an advertisement identity. We are not a collective of wannabes. We are not teenage angst transformed into political action. We are not a happening, performance or an obstructable few with a banner overhead. (...)


Radio Vendetta - The ZAD needs all our support

Radio Vendetta - The ZAD needs all our support

The ZAD, place of experiment and resistance - Welcome to France. The ZAD (Zone A Défendre; zone to defend) of Notre-Dame des Landes is a zone where the struggle in all its forms coexists with ways of life and aesthetics that go beyond Western European (...)


Red Cross

We stand with Ukraine

The Russian government’s attack on Ukraine has put millions of innocent lives in danger. We stand with Ukraine to support their freedom and to defend democracy. If you wish to support Ukraine and its people in their time of need, please consider donating to the Red Cross.


/e/ Foundation
eFoundation is a non-profit organization leading the development of Open Source mobile operating systems that respect users’ data privacy.

Tor Browser
Tor Browser
Tor protects your privacy

NordVPN
Protect all your devices.
2-Year Plan | Discount -72%