An Irish court allowed the extradition to Britain of Eamon Harrison, 23, accused of involvement in the death of 39 migrants, a resident of Northern Ireland.
This decision was made on Friday by Donald Binchy, Judge of the High Court of Ireland, who is hearing the case.
Harrison was detained under a European order issued by the British authorities in Dublin, Republic of Ireland, on 1 November. He was charged with 41 counts: 39 cases of manslaughter, conspiracy to move people illegally and conspiracy to facilitate illegal migration. The British authorities believe that it was Harrison who transported the van in which the bodies were subsequently found to the Belgian town of Zeebrugge before sending him to Britain.
“I concluded that there are no lawful obstacles to extradition”, – the judge’s verdict says.
Binchy said he was ready to issue an extradition warrant right after Friday’s meeting, but agreed to the defence’s request for an appeal. Harrison will remain in custody until 4 February, when the court will return to his case.
On 23 October, Essex County police found 39 dead in a truck that had arrived in the UK from Belgium. The victims were originally identified as Chinese citizens, but on October 26, the Vietnamese diaspora in Britain said the victims included Vietnamese citizens. Five people were detained on suspicion of involvement in the murder, including the truck driver, Maurice (Mo) Robinson, 25, of Northern Ireland, and Eamon Harrison, a resident of the same region. Three of the detainees have been released on bail. The Robinson hearing will begin on November 25.