Wednesday 21 March 2018

Irish solicitor loses latest Australian extradition battle

Vincent O'Donoguhe
Vincent O'Donoguhe reporters

A ONCE high-flying Dublin solicitor has lost the latest bid to prevent his extradition from Australia.

Bankrupt Vincent O'Donoghue, who once lived in a Killiney mansion that was the seaside residence of Archbishop John Charles McQuaid, is wanted here in connection with an alleged €30,000 fraud more than 13 years ago.

O'Donoghue -- whose four young children were born in Australia -- has been fighting the extradition since he was arrested in 2004. He has spent the last two and a half years in Perth's Hakea Prison after being considered a flight risk.

O'Donoghue, who emigrated to Australia in 2002, has been given 21 days to appeal today's decision.

Outside the courtroom, he told Australian Associated Press that he would appeal to the full bench of the Australian Federal Court and would also refer constitutional issues to the High Court.

"At the original hearing of this matter on the 13th of June I was left downstairs in the holding cells and the court proceeded to hear my matter without my presence.

"I am representing myself, and that's one of the issues I'll be referring to the High Court."

"[This case has] been going on since 1998 and it has cost the Commonwealth and Ireland several millions of dollars for $35,000.

"The issue was always a matter of contract, it was a deposit on real estate, it was never a matter of the criminal law," O'Donoghue said.

"However, because of the parties involved it has been made a matter of the criminal law.

"And I believe because I'm a lawyer I've been victimised and it's payback time."

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