Feeds

Clegg orders fresh review of UK extradition treaty

New hope for Gary McKinnon

Boost IT visibility and business value

Supporters of accused NASA hacker Gary McKinnon scored a small political victory after Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg ordered a fresh review of the lopsided extradition treaty between the US and the UK.

Clegg broke ranks with the Government over a review issued last month that concluded the treaty wasn't biased. He has appointed ex-Liberal Democratic leader Sir Menzies Campbell to chair an inquiry that will revisit the fairness of the treaty. The results are expected to form the basis for the party's policy in the next general election, The Telegraph reports.

The extradition treaty was agreed to shortly after the September 11 terrorist attacks and went into effect in Britain in 2004 and in the US two years later. It was promoted as a way to streamline the extradition of terrorist suspects between the two countries. It is now being invoked to forcibly transfer McKinnon to the US to face charges he hacked NASA computers.

Critics of the treaty say it is biased in favor of US officials. They cite figures claiming that since it went into effect 28 British citizens have been sent to the US for trial, compared with three Americans sent to the UK. What's more, critics say the standard of proof needed is uneven. The US is required to show only reasonable suspicion that someone is guilty of an offense, while UK officials must meet the much higher burden of probable cause to transfer an American.

Janice Sharp, the mother of McKinnon, said the review was “fantastic news.” She has long claimed her son suffers from Asperger's, a condition she says makes him a suicide risk if he is subjected to the rigors of extradition. She called last month's report, which was issued by a panel overseen by retired judge Sir Scott Baker, a “whitewash”.

The review ordered by Clegg is the second recent victory scored by McKinnon supporters. Earlier this week, UK Attorney General Dominic Grieve referred to the findings in Baker's report as only "guidelines" and said McKinnon may be tried in the UK rather than extradited.

Additional coverage from The Daily Mail is here. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart
Mega-costly gas 'n' 'leccy totting-up tech not worth it - Tory MP
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.