McKinnon to Stay In Britain; Extradition Case Adjourned by High Court

Britain’s Home Office has stated that an individual wanted in the United States for allegedly hacking into U.S. military computers would be permitted to stay in Britain for the time being as the new Home Secretary has permitted more time to consider the case. The accused’s, Gary McKinnon, extradition case was adjourned by the High Court. Mr. McKinnon is accused of hacking into American military computers shortly after 9/11. McKinnon’s lawyers have argued that due to Mr. McKinnon’s suffering from a type of autism, that his extradition would violate his human rights.

The United States-United Kingdom Extradition Treaty of 2003 requires certain criteria to be established in order for an offense to be extraditable. First, the offense must be punishable under the laws of both States by imprisonment for a period of one year or more or by some more severe penalty.

Second, extraditable offenses may consist of attempts or conspiracies to commit, participate in the commission of, aid or abet, counsel or procure commission of any offense which is otherwise extraditable.

Third, an offense shall be an extraditable offense regardless of whether the laws in the Requesting or Requested States place the
offense within the same category of offenses or describe the offense by similar terminology. Also an offense can be extraditable regardless of whether the offense is one for which United States federal law requires the showing of such matters as interstate transportation, or use of the mails or of other facilities affecting interstate or foreign commerce.

Fourth, if the alleged offense was committed outside the territory of the Requesting State, extradition shall nevertheless be granted in accordance with the provisions of the Treaty if the laws in the Requested State provide for the punishment of such conduct committed outside its territory in similar circumstances. If the laws in the Requested State do not provide for the punishment of such conduct committed outside of its territory in similar circumstances, the Requested State may use its discretion to grant extradition provided that all other criteria of the Treaty are met.

Finally, if extradition has been granted for an extraditable offense, it may also be granted for any other offense specified in the request if the latter offense is punishable by less than one year’s deprivation of liberty, provided that all other criteria for extradition are met.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, Interpol Litigation, International Extradition and OFAC Litigation.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at or at one of the offices listed above.

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