British judge recognizes Taiwan's legal status in extradition trial
Central News Agency
2014-01-09 10:47 PM
Taipei, Jan. 9 (CNA) The judge who is handling a trial involving the extradition of a British man convicted in Taiwan for a fatal drunk driving accident said Thursday that he acknowledges Taiwan's status as a "territory," enabling the court to enter formal proceedings. During the second day of the trial in Edinburgh, Judge Kenneth Maciver said that an Oct. 16 memorandum of understanding between the U.K. and Taiwan to extradite the fugitive Zain Dean shows the U.K.'s acknowledgement of Taiwan as a "territory." Maciver added that after reviewing related documents, he firmly believed he had no need to take a different stance on the matter from the British government. Maciver made the comments after Dean's lawyer Niall McCluskey argued during the first day of the trial Wednesday that the British government is not obliged to extradite its own citizen, as he challenged the island's legal status as a country or even a "territory." During Thursday's trial, McCluskey pointed out flaws in the letter of request for extradition filed by Taiwan's Ministry of Justice in an effort to hinder the court proceedings. As a result, the hearing was deferred for half an hour for the review of documents. However, after Maciver announced his decision on Taiwan's status as a "territory," the court entered formal proceedings on whether Taiwan's handling of Dean's case was in compliance with human rights treaties in Europe, to ensure that Dean had not suffered persecution. The results of the trial are expected to be announced in a few weeks. Dean fled Taiwan in August 2012, shortly before he was due to begin serving a four-year prison term for the 2010 death of a newspaper delivery man in Taipei in a drunk driving hit-and-run incident. (By Jennifer Huang and Y.L. Kao)
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