Minister for Justice v Egharevba

JurisdictionIreland
JudgeDenham C.J.
Judgment Date25 June 2015
Neutral Citation[2015] IESC 55
Docket NumberAppeal No. 51/2014
CourtSupreme Court
Date25 June 2015
Between
Minister for Justice and Equality
Applicant/Respondent
and
Trust Egharevba
Respondent/Appellant

[2015] IESC 55

Denham C.J.

Murray J.

O'Donnell J.

McKechnie J.

Dunne J.

Appeal No. 51/2014

THE SUPREME COURT

Extradition – European arrest warrant – Laundering – Appellant seeking to appeal against High Court order on points of law – Whether s. 44 of the European Arrest Warrant Act 2003 was applicable

Facts: The appellant, Ms Egharevba, was the subject of a European arrest warrant issued by the Republic of France on the 11th July, 2013. The warrant was endorsed by the High Court for execution in Ireland on the 16th July, 2013, and was executed on the 26th July, 2013. The appellant was arrested on that date, following which she was brought to the High Court. The appellant was remanded on bail pending the hearing of the application. The sole point of objection proceeded with in the High Court was a Part 3 objection in which the appellant invoked s. 44 of the European Arrest Warrant Act 2003. The High Court held that where, with respect to both of the offences to which the European arrest warrant related, the respondent had not been able to demonstrate the existence of the two conjunctive requirements that are needed for a valid invocation of s. 44 of the 2003 Act, the Court must decline to uphold the s. 44 objections raised in the case. Thus, on the 24th January, 2014, the High Court made an order of surrender pursuant to s. 16(1) of the 2003 Act. The appellant appealed to the Supreme Court from the judgment and order of the High Court on three questions certified by the trial judge as points of law of exceptional public importance: 1) Did the allegation that an offence of laundering, as an organised criminal gang, which was alleged to have taken place on French national territory and on an indivisible basis in Nigeria and Ireland, fall outside the scope of the first part of s. 44, such that it was not an offence which took place in a place other than the issuing state?; 2) Did the hypothetical act of laundering in France by a French citizen the proceeds of a criminal organisation”s activities in Ireland amount to an offence contrary to s. 72 of the Criminal Justice Act 2006, in circumstances where s. 74 of the 2006 Act treats acts performed outside the State as being capable of being prosecuted by the State if done on board an Irish ship or aircraft or is done by an Irish citizen or a body corporate established in Ireland?; 3) In the hypothetical act of conspiracy, where the subject offence is money laundering, did the allegation that funds originated in Ireland and were transferred to France, where they were then allegedly received and transmitted onwards, constitute an offence, the subject of which was committed in the State or against a citizen of Ireland?

Held by Denham CJ that, having considered the meaning of s. 44 of the 2003 Act in Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform v Bailey [2012] IESC 16, the Court would affirm the determination of the High Court that the appellant could not establish that the first condition of s. 44 was satisfied with respect to the laundering offence. Denham CJ was satisfied that as the two requirements of the section are conjunctive, the appellant did not meet the conditions set out in s. 44; thus, the answer to the first question was that s. 44 was not applicable.

Denham CJ held that answer to be sufficient to meet the appeal. Consequently, Denham CJ dismissed the appeal and affirmed the order of the High Court that the appellant be surrendered to the Republic of France. Denham CJ held that the Supreme Court does not answer hypothetical cases, except in the special jurisdiction arising under Article 26 of the Constitution. Thus, the Court did not address questions 2 and 3 as certified.

Appeal dismissed.

Judgment delivered on the 25th day of June, 2015, by Denham C.J.
1

This is an appeal by Trust Egharevba, the appellant/respondent, referred to as ‘the appellant’, from the judgment and order of the High Court (Edwards J.) dated the 24th January, 2014, whereby it was ordered that the appellant be surrendered to the Republic of France.

2

The appellant is the subject of a European arrest warrant issued by the Republic of France, on the 11th July, 2013. The warrant was endorsed by the High Court for execution in this jurisdiction on the 16th July, 2013, and was executed on the 26th July, 2013. The appellant was arrested by Sergeant K. on that date, following which she was brought to the High Court. The appellant was remanded on bail pending the hearing of the application.

3

The sole point of objection proceeded with in the High Court was a Part 3 objection in which the appellant invoked s. 44 of the Act of 2003.

4

The High Court held that where, with respect to both of the offences to which the European arrest warrant relates, the respondent has not been able to demonstrate the existence of ‘the two conjunctive requirements’ that are required to be established for a valid invocation of s. 44 of the Act of 2003, the Court must decline to uphold the s. 44 objections raised in the case. Thus, the High Court made an order of surrender pursuant to s. 16(1) of the Act of 2003.

5

The appellant has appealed to this Court, on three questions as certified by the learned trial judge as points of law of exceptional public importance, being:-

‘(i) Does the allegation that an offence of “laundering, as an organised criminal gang”, which is alleged to have taken place “on French national territory and on an indivisible basis in Nigeria and Ireland”, that is to say, a trans-national offence, fall outside the scope of the first part of section 44 of the European Arrest Warrant Act, 2003, such that it is not an offence which took place “in a place other than the issuing state”?

(ii) Is the hypothetical act of laundering in France by a French citizen the proceeds of a criminal organisation's activities in Ireland amount to an offence contrary to section 72 of the Criminal Justice Act, 2006, in circumstances where section 74 of the Criminal Justice Act, 2006 as amended by section 11 of the Criminal Justice...

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11 cases
  • Minister for Justice and Equality v Hughes
    • Ireland
    • High Court
    • 12 Giugno 2020
    ...v. D.F. [2016] IEHC 82; Minister for Justice and Equality v. S.F. [2016] IEHC 81; Minister for Justice and Equality v. Trust Egharevba [2015] IESC 55; Minister for Justice, Equality and Law reform v. Hill [2009] IEHC 159; R V. Doot [1973] AC 807. 26 In short, the Applicant submitted that th......
  • Minister for Justice and Equality v S.F.
    • Ireland
    • High Court
    • 15 Febbraio 2016
    ...respondent sought to distinguish the present case from that of the recent Supreme Court decision in Minister for Justice v. Egharevba [2015] IESC 55 in which s. 44 of the Act of 2003 was considered. In Egharevba, that respondent failed to show that the offence in question was committed out......
  • Minister for Justice and Equality v D.F.
    • Ireland
    • High Court
    • 15 Febbraio 2016
    ...respondent sought to distinguish the present case from that of the recent Supreme Court decision in Minister for Justice v. Egharevba [2015] IESC 55 in which s. 44 of the Act of 2003 was considered. In Egharevba, that respondent failed to show that the offence in question was committed out......
  • Minister for Justice and Equality v Keane
    • Ireland
    • High Court
    • 12 Maggio 2022
    ...the issue of extraterritoriality, the following cases are of assistance to this Court: In Minister for Justice and Equality v. Egharevba [2015] IESC 55, at para. 15 of her judgment, Denham C.J. stated;- “[15] The requirements set out in s. 44 of the Act of 2003, as amended, are conjunctive.......
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