Human rights group offers to help in Polish extradition case

Artur Celmer claims he is at risk of unfair trial in Poland due to political interference

Ms Justice Aileen Donnelly adjourned the hearing until Tuesday.

Ms Justice Aileen Donnelly adjourned the hearing until Tuesday.

 

The Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC) has offered to help the High Court in the case of a man who is wanted in Poland to face trial for alleged drug trafficking.

The commission applied to the High Court on Monday to be brought into the extradition hearing of Artur Celmer which is due to take place on Tuesday.

Lawyers for the commission said they are in a position to help the court decide whether to extradite Mr Celmer to Poland following claims that he is at risk of an unfair trial due to political interference in the judicial process by the Polish government and comments by a deputy justice minister calling Mr Celmer a “dangerous criminal from a drug mafia”.

Counsel for the Minister for Justice Remy Farrell SC objected to the commission’s application while Sean Guerin SC, for Mr Celmer, said he could not consent to the application if it caused a delay in the hearing.

Mr Celmer’s extradition to Poland has been put on hold following accusations of interference by the Polish government in the appointment of judges and other “reforms” that the European Commission says have enabled political influence in the composition, powers, administration and functioning of the judiciary.

Ms Justice Aileen Donnelly said she is not in a position to decide on the application right away and adjourned the hearing until Tuesday.