As international borders have broken down with the development of the internet and with the prevalence of international business and travel, so too has the law evolved to detect and prosecute alleged crime across trans-national borders.
Particularly in cases of alleged organised crime, terrorism, human trafficking and international sex offences, law enforcement agencies request the assistance of foreign counterparts to assist in the arrest and extradition of accused persons to the prosecuting jurisdiction. Law enforcement agencies can obtain assistance from Interpol and Europol to locate individuals wanted in other jurisdictions. Depending upon the relationship between Australia and the country in which the accused has been located, they may be extradited back to Australia to answer the charge. An example is the case of Puneet Puneet, pleaded guilty to culpable driving in 2008, but absconded to India on a friend’s passport before his Plea Hearing and Sentence, where he would certainly have received a period of imprisonment.
Where a person is proposed to be extradited to Australia, that extradition is governed by the Extradition Act 1988. However, whether Australia has an extradition arrangement with the other country depends on the status of Australia’s relationship with that country. Accordingly, extradition is judged on a case by case basis.
Where a person is objecting to their extradition, an understanding of International law in the criminal context and a person’s rights when they are the subject of an extradition request (either to or from Australia) is essential.
The availability of our solicitors to respond to email and telephone enquiries promptly has been utilised by prospective and past clients when they are considering whether to object to proposed extradition.