Ó Fallúin -v- Governor of Cloverhill Prison, [2007] IESC 20 (2007)

Docket Number:07/06
Party Name:Ó Fallúin, Governor of Cloverhill Prison
Judge:Fennelly J.
 
FREE EXCERPT

THE SUPREME COURT No. 07/06

Murray C.J.

Denham J.

Fennelly J.

IN THE MATTER OF ARTICLE 40.4 OF THE CONSTITUTION

AND OF THE HABEAS CORPUS ACT, 1782

BETWEENMICHÉAL Ó FALLÚIN Applicant/Appellant and

THE GOVERNOR OF CLOVERHILL PRISON Respondentand

THE MINISTER FOR JUSTICE, EQUALITY & LAW REFORM Notice Party

JUDGMENT of MR JUSTICE FENNELLY delivered on the 3rd day of May, 2007.

  1. This appeal raises an important point concerning the power to detain a person pursuant to the European Arrest Warrant Act, 2003. Section 16(7) of the Act provides that a person whose surrender to an issuing state has been ordered, but who is not in fact surrendered within ten days of the coming into effect of that order "shall be released from custody immediately." May he, nonetheless, be detained in custody pending an appeal to this Court?

  2. There were two appeals before the Court. The first was an appeal against the order directing the Appellant's surrender. The second was and still is an appeal against the order of the High Court (Peart J) of 29th November 2005 declining to order his release pursuant to Article 40.4.2 of the Constitution. The Appellant gave notice shortly before the hearing that he was not pursuing the first appeal. That appeal has, therefore, been dismissed. The Appellant proceeded with his appeal pursuant to Article 40.4.2. At the end of the hearing, this Court decided that the respondents had not justified the lawfulness of the continued detention of the Appellant and it ordered his release. This is the statement of reasons for that decision.

  3. On 21st June 2004, District Judge Workman at Bow Street Magistrates' Court, London, in the United Kingdom, issued a European Arrest Warrant seeking the arrest and surrender of the Appellant. The warrant alleges that the Appellant had conspired with others to defraud the United Kingdom Passport Agency by the provision of false passport applications, contrary to common law. The Warrant requested that the Appellant be arrested and surrendered for the purpose of a criminal prosecution. It was communicated to the Irish authorities. The Appellant was duly arrested and brought before the High Court in accordance with the provisions of the Act.

  4. The Appellant filed a Notice of Objection and raised a number of legal points resisting his surrender. None of these are now relevant, since the Appellant has withdrawn his appeal against the order for his surrender. The proceedings in the High Court were conducted before Finlay Geoghegan J, who delivered several judgments. By her order dated 20th October 2005, the learned judge ordered that the Appellant be surrendered to such person as would be duly authorised by the United Kingdom to receive him and that he be committed to prison pending the carrying out of the order. The accompanying committal warrant ordered that he be lodged in Cloverhill Prison "there to be detained by the Governor thereof for a period of not less than fifteen days from the date hereof (except in the meantime the [Appellant] has consented to his being delivered up in that period) until his delivery as aforesaid and for any further period as may be...

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