Reform of the UK's extradition laws is much needed. The case of Gary MacKinnon, who is threatened with extradition to America has caused much concern.
I therefore welcomed my colleague, Dominic Raab securing a debate on this need for reform. It was great to give my support to protecting our UK citizens – the first duty of any country.
The situation has long troubled me: in principle, if people commit an offence in this country, they should be prosecuted in this country. Many of us feel that way. According to paragraph 4 of article 8 of the treaty on extradition with the States:
"If the offense has been committed outside the territory of the Requesting State, extradition shall be granted in accordance with the provisions of the Treaty if the laws in the Requested State provide for the punishment of such conduct committed outside its territory in similar circumstances."
Perhaps I am an old-fashioned lawyer—that is my background and training—but I feel deeply that the right forum for prosecution in such a case is in the UK and that people in this country should be tried by their peers. Perhaps I am old-fashioned, perhaps it is our jurisprudence and long legal tradition, but that is how I feel, as so many of us do.
You can see more of my points, and the debate in full here
It has been an honour and privilege to serve as Member of Parliament for Dover & Deal. I hope to be re-elected to serve our community for another term.
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