UAE Expert Witness - Radha Stirling
Stirling in Washington DC, speaking alongside prominent people like Senator Rand Paul on the Middle East.
Radha Stirling has provided expert testimony in multiple countries in extradition proceedings, immigration applications, civil litigation and arbitration.
Ms Stirling speaks regularly at events and think tanks, advising government and policy makers. Stirling has only ever achieves positive results for her clients.
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Tranent man Conor Howard detained over cannabis grinder can leave Greece
A FAMILY stuck in Greece after a Tranent man was stopped with an empty cannabis grinder in Qatar a year ago are heading home.
Conor Howard, along with mum Adele and step-dad Robert, will return to Scotland over the weekend after Greek courts dismissed extradition.
Interpol and extradition expert Radha Stirling, who is representing Conor, 27, issued a statement on the ruling yesterday (Wednesday).
They said: “Conor Howard and his family are naturally relieved by today’s ruling to dismiss Qatar’s extradition request, but these are proceedings that Conor never should have had to endure in the first place. Conor was questioned in Doha for carrying an herb grinder in transit from Australia to the UK.
“The grinder was confiscated but he was allowed to continue on to the UK and thought nothing more of it until he was arrested in Greece on the basis of an Interpol Red Notice almost three months ago. Conor was detained in a foreign prison and forced to undergo extradition proceedings from a country with a dubious human rights record and a history of Interpol abuse.”
During the legal battle, 55-year-old Robert took unwell and had to go to hospital.
Conor’s step-sister Lauren Young, who lives in Wallyford, was pleased to see the issue moving forward but stressed there was still work to do, saying: “Conor will be coming back to Scotland over the weekend but the warrant still stands. There is still a bit of work to go but he is getting to come home.”
Radha added: “Conor has been unfairly detained, his father suffered a heart attack as a result of the stress and the financial impact huge.
“Others have suffered PTSD and health issues following their arrests abroad.
“Conor thought he faced years in a desert prison with a terrible human rights record. This is a family’s worst nightmare and they should never have had to go through this.”
Kenny MacAskill, MP for East Lothian, has been involved in trying to help the family.
He said: "I'm delighted that the nightmare for him and his family is over, and he is able to come home.
"It has been fraught and so unnecessary."
Hakeem Al Araibi and the Pressing Case for Interpol Reform
Radha Stirling, an international extradition expert and CEO of Detained in Dubai, commented that “in 2015, Interpol announced that they would not consider any listing request pertaining to an asylum seeker or refugee requested by the country from which they had fled. Thus, Bahrain’s request for a Red Notice against Araibi should have been initially rejected. It is Interpol’s responsibility to ensure that their rules are adhered to, especially regarding Red and Blue Notices. Araibi is a refugee who was granted asylum by Australia. According to Interpol’s internal protocols, he should have been immune from a Red Notice request by Bahrain.”
According to Stirling, “Interpol is clearly in urgent need of reform, and Australia should lead the call. Why has Interpol failed to recognize Australia’s granting of asylum to Abaidi, an act which should have instantly nullified Bahrain’s request for a Red Notice? There needs to be an end to the misuse of the Interpol system.”
She added, “Countries with documented gross human rights violations; countries to which extradition is likely to result in an individual’s torture or death; should be altogether barred from recourse to Interpol. There needs to be international cooperation to implement human rights provisions in the extradition procedures of any nation."
“In the case of Araibi, as in so many others, what countries like Bahrain rely on is ‘jurisdiction shopping.’ They list an individual on Interpol, knowing that most developed nations would never entertain the possibility of extradition, and just wait for that person to cross the border into a nation with a dismissive view on human rights.”
This could be why Araibi was not stopped at the airport in Australia, but in Thailand. Thus, it would appear that Bahrain had waited to list Araibi on Interpol until it knew that he would be traveling to Thailand on his honeymoon. By the time that the Interpol Red Notice against Araibi was lifted, Thai authorities claimed that it did not matter since they already had an arrest and extradition request for Araibi from Bahrain.
“The Red Notice against Araibi was illegitimate according to Interpol’s own rules. Thailand has not extradition treaty with Bahrain, and Araibi is in grave danger of torture or death if he is sent to Bahrain. The Australian government has good relations with Thailand, but if their extradition procedures make no consideration of human rights concerns, the government needs to push for reforms in this area and the case of Araibi presents an urgent need for change; otherwise Australians cannot feel secure traveling to Thailand,” Stirling explained.