The British Home Secretary Theresa May last week lost her appeal to overrule an earlier judicial decision not to deport controversial hate preacher Abu Qatada. This has been an ongoing battle between Theresa May and Mr Qatada who is accused of being a “dangerous” individual by Mrs May’s legal team.
The most recent appeal was based on grounds stating that Mr Qatada avoided deportation due to “errors of law”. The Appeals Commission dealing with special immigration cases last decided that Mr Qatada could not be extradited to Jordan, due to there being a “real risk” that evidence from his previous co-defendants trial may well come as a breach of his human rights should they later be used against him at a retrial. Mr Qatada’s council stand by this evidence and insist the co defendants were tortured. His lawyer went on to say that there was the possibility of a “denial of justice” if his client was deported back to Jordan.
Council for Mr May argued that the Appeals Commission had misunderstood the various legal tests which were to be applied by a Jordanian court when Mr Qatada inevitably faces a trial. They assured the Court that the constitution in Jordan prohibits the use of statements to be used in proceedings should they have been obtained by using methods of torture. It is therefore clear that Mrs May has strong views which she is currently pursuing to deport the controversial hate preacher and let another jurisdiction deal with his actions. This may partly be due to the fact that his legal costs have been paid for using the current legal aid scheme which in effect uses tax payer’s money to fund his defence.
The outcome of the Court of Appeal’s decision has done one thing for certain, its given the government the ability to use this as a driving point in expelling the current Human Rights Act and passing a more approved ‘British Bill of Rights’.