Bertino (Appellant) v Public Prosecutor's Office, Italy (Respondent)
Case ID: 2022/0103
(1) For a requested person to have deliberately absented himself from trial for the purposes of section 20(3) Extradition Act 2002, must the requesting authority prove that he has actual knowledge that he could be convicted and sentenced in absentia?
(2) Where the requesting authority asserts that it can be demonstrated by inference that a requested person could reasonably foresee that he could be convicted and sentenced in absentia, must the inference be the only reasonable inference?
The Appellant is subject to a European Arrest Warrant ("EAW") issued by the Italian Public Prosecutor's Office. The warrant is a conviction warrant that was made after the Appellant was convicted of an offence described as child grooming. The Appellant committed the offence in 2015 and was released pending criminal investigations. In 2015 the Appellant signed a document in which he, amongst other matters, elected an address in Italy as the address for correspondence on the matter. The Appellant subsequently moved to the UK. He informed the Italian police that he was moving to the UK but did not provide a UK address. In June 2017, the decision was taken to prosecute the Appellant. The Appellant did not receive the summons to attend the trial and the trial occurred in his absence, with a court-appointed lawyer representing him. The Appellant, in his absence, was convicted and sentenced to serve 1 year in prison, suspended on condition of payment of compensation within 6 months. The Appellant did not pay the compensation required, with the consequence that the custodial sentence was activated and a EAW seeking to enforce the custodial sentence was issued.
The Appellant contests his extradition. The issue at the first instance extradition hearing was whether the Appellant was deliberately absent from the trial in Italy, within the meaning of section 20(3) of the Extradition Act 2003. The first instance judge held that he was. The High Court upheld the judge's findings. The Appellant now seeks permission to appeal to the UK Supreme Court.
The Public Prosecutor's Office at the Court of Pordenone, Italian Republic
Lord Hodge, Lord Sales, Lord Burrows, Lord Stephens, Lord Burnett
Hearing start date
28 November 2023
Hearing finish date
28 November 2023