Friday 23 March 2018

Law lecturer wanted in UK for making indecent images of child begins last minute legal bid to stop his extradition

Julian Myerscough outside the Four Courts
Julian Myerscough outside the Four Courts

Aodhan O Faolain

A law lecturer wanted in the UK for making indecent images of a child has launched a last minute legal bid aimed at halting his extradition to England.

The action has been brought by Julian Myerscough (54) with an address at Alexandra Road, Lowestoft in Suffolk.

He arrived in Ireland shortly after he was found guilty by a jury of 13 counts of making indecent images of a child at Ipswich Crown Court on 30 September 2015.

He was also found guilty of three counts of breaching a Sexual Offences Prevention Order imposed on him following a previous conviction for similar offences.

He had attended his trial but failed to return after lunch when the jury reached its verdict.  He was convicted in his absence.

After it was discovered he had travelled to Ireland, Myerscough was arrested at a Dublin hotel on foot of a European Arrest Warrant issued by the English authorities. He had opposed the extradition.

Last month Ms Justice Aileen Donnelly made an order for Myerscough’s extradition.

Rejecting all his arguments she said there was no reason for her to make orders refusing to surrender Myerscough to the British authorities.

At Monday's sitting of the High Court Myerscough, represented by Kieran Kelly Bl, asked Mr Justice Robert Haughton for an inquiry under Article 40.4 of the Constitution, into the legality of his detention in custody in Ireland pending his extradition to the UK.

Counsel said the application, which was made on an ex-parte basis, concerned Myerscough's desire to appeal Ms Justice Donnelly's judgment to the Court of Appeal.

Following her judgement Ms Justice Donnelly refused to give him permission to appeal.  Myerscough's legal team says the denial of an opportunity to appeal is unconstitutional and contravenes EU law.

Mr Kelly told the Court that his client is likely to be returned to England some day this week.

Mr Justice Haughton adjourned the case to Tuesday's vacation sitting of the High Court. The application for an inquiry is to be heard in the presence of lawyers for the state, the Judge directed.

Myerscough was not present in court for the brief hearing.

During the extradition hearing Myerscough's lawyers had argued he should not be extradited because he had not received a fair trial in England.

Myerscough claimed a key police witness, whose testimony was used to convict him, was not available for cross examination during trial. This amounted to a breach of his right to a fair trial under Section 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

He also claimed he had been spat at and threatened after his home address was revealed by the media. He said he lived in fear of death and the police in England were not able to protect him.

The State had argued there was nothing preventing his surrender from taking place.

The EAW seeking Myerscough's surrender stated charges were brought against him after a USB stick and a computer seized by police at a house he had been residing at in September 2013 were found to contain a number of indecent images of children.

The possession and making of these images breached a Sexual Offences Prevention Order, of ten years duration, made against him in December 2010, the EAW added.

That order was imposed on him in respect of three counts of making indecent photographs of children and two counts of possession of indecent images of children, the EAW further stated.

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