A High Court judge has said that she will order the extradition of 58-year-old Dundalk man, Liam Campbell, to Lithuania for Real IRA arms offences allegedly committed there 14 years ago. After a process which has taken 12 years, the order is to be officially delivered on July 13. The following is an analysis of the latest bid to extradite him by Cait Trainor (damnyourconcessions.com)
To say the current extradition case against Liam Campbell is farcical is an understatement, the most striking element of this extradition attempt is that Lithuania are attempting to extradite him to a country that he has never even set foot in.
So you will know by now I am not one to shy away from the realities of the situation, so here is some background. In 2008 Liam’s brother Michael was arrested in Lithuania on charges of arms smuggling, he was initially sentenced to 12 years in a Lithuanian prison, however on appeal in 2013 he was acquitted as it emerged in court that he was framed by British intelligence. A very successful campaign opposing Michael’s imprisonment was ran in Ireland and thankfully Michael is rightfully back at home.
While Michael’s case is a cut and dry case of a good old-fashioned stitch up, it doesn’t stop there. Not content with framing Michael and holding him in an unsanitary Lithuanian Prison for 5 years, they have went further and are attempting to extradite his brother Liam to Lithuania to face similar charges to which Michael was already acquitted.
What is so striking about this extradition attempt is that this is the third time they have attempted it and again most ludicrous of all is that Liam Campbell has never set foot in Lithuania in his life.
The first European arrest warrant was executed in the 26 counties in January 2009, at the time the Dublin government had been warned that if the extradition was granted it could be in breach of Article 3 the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). Liam was released on bail while proceedings where underway and complied with all conditions.
In May 2009 he was then arrested by the 6 County state police force on foot of the same European arrest warrant, he was not granted bail and was held in Maghaberry prison while extradition proceedings in the north took place. These proceedings took nearly 4 years! All the while Liam was incarcerated and spent much of that time in 23 hour lock up. Finally in January 2012 the extradition attempt was dismissed, this was then appealed and in February 2013 a Belfast Court upheld the original ruling against extradition stating that Liam would be held in barbaric conditions and that he “ would be at real risk of inhuman and degrading treatment by reason of the jail conditions”. Liam was finally released in March 2013.
Since that time Liam has returned to family life, a life that has at various time been so terribly disrupted by British state attempts to imprison him for the simple crime of being an Irish Republican.
The saga does not end there however, on 2nd December 2016 Liam was arrested in Dundalk once again on foot of a European arrest warrant issued by Lithuanian officials.
He was held in custody by the 26 County state until he was released on bail on 20th December 2016.
At present there are a number of individuals who are actively opposing this extradition and I stand along with them 100%.
I object strongly to this latest attempt to extradite Liam to Lithuania for a number of reasons.
1. He has already gone through arduous extradition proceedings in one part of Ireland and was held in custody for nearly four years while it was happening.
2. A court has already ruled against extradition and trying this case over and over is an exercise in torture
3. Because of the medieval conditions of Lithuanian prisons that are unfit and inhumane
4. It is clear and it came out in open court that the entire situation and allegations are the construct of British intelligence and this is an obvious fit up
5. I find it absurd to try to extradite someone to a Country for an offence in that country, when the person in question has never laid foot in it.
If you agree with even one of my reasons for opposing this extradition, I am asking you to support Liam Campbell and say NO to this latest attempt to take him away from his family and his country.