UFO Hacker Gary McKinnon Gets to Stay in UK (Video)
2010 05 24
Home Secretary Theresa May has agreed to an adjournment in the extradition case of computer hacker Gary McKinnon.
Video from: YouTube.com
A judge was due to rule on whether her predecessor Alan Johnson was wrong to grant the request by the US.
Lawyers for Mr McKinnon, 44, from north London, made representations to the new government as part of a long campaign to prevent an American trial.
Mrs May "considered the proposal" and a Home Office application to delay the High Court decision is to be made.
Mr McKinnon’s lawyer Karen Todner said: "The secretary of state, having recently taken office and having received further representations from the claimant’s representatives, wishes to have appropriate time fully to consider the issues in the case."
She added: "We are hoping Theresa May will look at our representations and agree Gary should not be extradited."
Glasgow-born Mr McKinnon, who has Asperger’s syndrome, is accused of hacking into sensitive US military computers causing £425,000 ($700,000) damage. He admits breaking into the system but says he was seeking evidence of UFOs.
His lawyers have argued he is unfit to be extradited and should be charged by the UK authorities.
Ms Todner said the home secretary would consider medical evidence supporting their case.
A judge at the High Court was set to give a ruling next week in a judicial review examining Mr Johnson’s decision that a US trial would not breach Mr McKinnon’s human rights.
Mr Johnson had said he had received a guarantee from the US government that Mr McKinnon would receive "appropriate medical care and treatment", including counselling and medication.
The adjournment comes as the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition promised a fresh look at extradition arrangements between the countries.
In its policy programme document, the parties say the government is to "review the operation" of the Extradition Act and the 2003 US/UK extradition treaty "to make sure it is even-handed".
Campaigners have expressed concerns that the treaty, agreed between Washington and London in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, was being used to seek extradition for offences which it was not originally intended to cover.
Mr McKinnon’s mother Janis Sharp said that while in opposition both the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats had condemned the use of the extradition treaty in her son’s case.
"I am therefore confident that the new government will do the right thing and halt Gary’s extradition so that he may face trial in the UK, without the further unnecessary risks to his mental health that extradition would bring".
Article from: news.bbc.co.uk
Hacker Gary McKinnon to be tried in Britain
Scot computer hacker Gary McKinnon is set to avoid extradition and be tried in Britain, the Scottish Sunday Express can reveal.
The 43-year-old’s family expects confirmation from the new Government within days that the decision to send Gary to the USA has been overturned.
Mr McKinnon, who has Asperger’s syndrome, has been accused of causing widespread damage by hacking into Pentagon and Nasa computers in 2001 and 2002. American officials have insisted the “cyber terrorist” should be extradited to the US where he could face up to 60 years in prison.
His family and supporters have spent years fighting the extradition order, although previous Labour ministers refused to block the US bid.
But the campaign won heavyweight backing from the Tories and the Lib Dems, with Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg both previously voicing concern.
Foreign Secretary William Hague last week promised a fresh look at the extradition arrangements.
Mr McKinnon’s lawyer, Karen Todner, yesterday lobbied the new Home Secretary Theresa May and urged her to overrule her predecessor.
She said: “We hope the new Liberal Conservative Government will act upon their previous statements that it would be unjust to extradite Mr McKinnon.”
Last night, a source close to the case said “things are looking positive” for the Scot, and added: “It’s looking more likely Gary will face the courts in the UK rather than be sent to the USA.
“I suspect the decision will be made over the next few days.”
Janis Sharp, the Glasgow-born hacker’s mother, confirmed she is expecting to hear from the ministers soon.
She said: “We should know for certain by the end of the week. It’s certainly looking better.
“Our new Prime Minister and his deputy have supported Gary in the past. Surely they don’t want to lose face so soon after taking the office and go back on their words?”
But she admitted her son has struggled to understand why the announcement was taking so long, and added: “Gary thought it would be over the moment the new coalition Government was formed.
“He is more stressed now than ever because of the delay. It is really affecting him badly.
“He’s scared, and he’s locked himself in the house and refuses to answer his phone.
“Gary is very intelligent, but he doesn’t function the way most of us do.
“But we are carefully optimistic. It’s been a long and dark fight, but there’s finally some light at the end of the tunnel.”
Mr McKinnon had been due to be extradited by the end of January after the former Home Secretary, Alan Johnson, ruled he should go despite medical advice from the Scot’s psychiatrist.
However, a High Court judge agreed to review the decision and said the psychiatrist’s evidence that the hacker was suicidal constituted grounds under Human Rights law to turn down the extradition.
Ms Sharp, who now lives in Hertfordshire, has been so incensed by her son’s treatment that she stood against Jack Straw in the General Election.
He was Foreign Secretary when the extradition treaty was signed.
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