Monday 11 December 2017

Irish citizen facing extradition to US for conspiracy waits for court judgement

A High Court judge has said he needs a “couple of more days” to return judgement in the judicial review application brought by a man facing extradition to the United States on international terrorism charges.

Algerian-born Irish citizen Ali Charaf Damache (48), who has been living in Ireland for a decade, is wanted in the United States to face charges relating to the conspiracy to provide material support for terrorists and attempted identity theft to facilitate an act of international terrorism.

The High Court heard the US alleges it has evidence that Damache conspired with American woman Colleen LaRose - who used the online name “Jihad Jane” - and others to create a terror cell in Europe capable of targeting both US and western European citizens.

It is alleged Damache - who went by the username “the black flag” - also participated in a conspiracy to transfer a passport stolen from a US citizen to an individual in Pakistan whom the conspirators believed to be a member of Al Qaeda.

Damache is seeking judicial review to challenge the DPP's decision not to prosecute him in Ireland for the offences. The extradition case has been adjourned until after judgement is returned in the judicial review application.

Judgement was listed for today but Mr Justice John Edwards said that although he was “very nearly there” with the judgement, he wanted to be happy and needed “a couple of days to be absolutely happy”.

He said the matter should be listed for judgement next Monday (January 27).

Speaking from the dock, Damache later complained that he had been “abused and bullied” and that his Quran had been confiscated, which prevented him from praying.

Mr Justice Edwards explained that a person who makes a complaint can pursue existing prison grievance or complaint procedures and that he had no control over the prison system or circumstances in which a person is held, unless an application is put before him.

If convicted of the charges against him as laid out by an indictment returned in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania in October 2011, Damache faces a potential sentence of 45 years in prison.


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