On 23 Nov 2017, a Lithuanian Minister for Justice, in reply to Justice Donnelly’s request for further information, offered his undertaking that if Mr Liam Campbell was extradited he would be held at Kaunas Remand Prison, Lithuania.
Barrister Remy Farrell for Liam Campbell argued that, any assurance offered could not be taken at face value, no guarantees could be given that torture or degrading treatment would not be meted out. He argued that this was an attempt by the Lithuanian authorities to sweep under the carpet the widely known defects In their system of protection and the abusive treatment suffered by those persons held in prisons in that country today.
Farrell, continued his argument, that it is “profoundly unsatisfactory” that one year on from Liam’s arrest, the State of Lithuania attempt to change tactics, using veiled assurances that run contrary to common practices and the evidence pertaining in the warrant, that state Liam Campbell, would effectively be held in Lukiskes Remand Prison.
Farrell offered the view that indeed this could only be viewed as a self-serving act by the Lithuanian state.
As it currently stands, Lithuanian code of practice states that a person sought for trial will be held in the state where a warrant is issued. In the case of Liam Campbell this is the condemned prison of Lukiskes, an ex-Soviet torture camp.
Lithuanian Authorities, rather than address their failings to observe and correct the human rights abuses and consequent infringements placed on them by the European community, not to mention rulings against such practices by their own courts; attempt to gloss over these grim and barbaric conditions stating they would make an exception in this case.
In June 2017 Prevention of Torture committee member, Professor Rod Morgan, was refused entry to update his findings on the treatment of persons held in detention centres in Lithuania. This refusal was followed by high level talks between the Committee from the Prevention of Torture ( CPT) and Lithuania, a red alert that the barbaric treatment in prisons was still continuing and was not about to change anytime soon.
As it stands, Ireland does not have any law on accepting the promise that torture or degrading treatment will not happen in a requesting state, especially so in the case of an Irish person whose extradition is sought. Gageby requests that a legal provision be determined on the matter by members of the Oireachtas in the absence of same.
The willingness and speed in which Lithuanian Authorities continue to pursue extradition in what has now become a 9 year struggle for The Campbell family, must be viewed as being exactly what it is, a murky, underhanded act of puppetry at its best, by the State of Lithuania on behalf of British Agents, that have conducted and secretly masterminded this case of deception and allure.
We need to look no further for proof of British state involvement than that of Liam’s brother Michael which is a related case.
In 2008 Liam’s brother Michael was arrested in Lithuania on charges of arms smuggling, he was initially sentenced to 12 years in a Lithuanian prison, however on appeal in 2013 he was acquitted as it emerged in court that he was framed by British intelligence.
Since 2009 the Campbell family have faced turmoil and stress as Lithuania continually tries to extradite Liam. The first European arrest warrant was executed in the 26 counties in January 2009, at the time The Dublin government had been warned that if the extradition was granted it could be in breach of Article 3 the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). Liam was released on bail while proceedings where underway and complied with all conditions.
In May 2009 Liam was then arrested by the 6 County state police force, on foot of the same European arrest warrant, he was not granted bail and was held in Maghaberry prison while extradition proceedings in the North took place. These proceedings took nearly 4 years!
All the while Liam was incarcerated and spent much of that time in 23 hour lock up. Finally in January 2012 the extradition attempt was dismissed, this was then appealed and in February 2013 a Belfast Court upheld the original ruling against extradition stating that Liam would be held in barbaric conditions and that he ” would be at real risk of inhuman and degrading treatment by reason of the jail conditions”. Liam was finally released in March 2013.
This latest attempt to extradite Liam should be viewed with the same suspicion as previous attempts.
Support Liam Campbell, say no to extradition
With many thanks to: Irish Republican Prisoner News