‘Whacker’ Duffy to be extradited to North to continue sentence

Jailed republican to finish life term for murder of British soldier in Derby in 1992

 Declan Duffy:  to be extradited to Northern Ireland. Photograph: Gary Fox/Collins

Declan Duffy: to be extradited to Northern Ireland. Photograph: Gary Fox/Collins

 

Jailed republican paramilitary Declan “Whacker” Duffy is to be extradited back across the Border to continue serving his life sentence for murder, following the completion of a sentence for false imprisonment.

Duffy (44), with a last address at Hanover Street West in Dublin, had been serving a term of life imprisonment for the murder of British army sergeant Michael Newman in Derby City in 1992 when he was released on license by a Northern Irish parole board in March 2013.

However, Duffy was arrested by gardaí on December 5th, 2015 and was last year jailed by the Special Criminal Court for six years for falsely imprisoning Martin Byrne in Rathcoole-Saggart, Co Dublin on June 9th, 2015.

On June 6th, 2016, the Under Secretary of State for Northern Ireland revoked Duffy’s license and recalled him to prison. A European Arrest Warrant (EAW) was issued for his arrest.

His lawyers had opposed their client’s surrender on grounds that his return to prison in the North amounted to “double punishment”.

Counsel for Duffy, Anthony Hanrahan BL, submitted to the High Court that his client had already served “what was deemed by the Sentence Review Commissioner to be an appropriate sentence.”

He said it was an “unusual case”, as the offending behaviour was carried out in a separate jurisdiction in which Duffy would be serving his six-year sentence in full, before having to return to Northern Ireland to once again begin his life sentence.

However, Ms Justice Aileen Donnelly ordered Duffy’s extradition on Monday. She postponed surrender pending the completion of Duffy’s current six-year prison sentence in the Republic for false imprisonment and assault.

Duffy pleaded guilty at the Special Criminal Court to assaulting John Roche, causing him harm, at The Towers, Garter Lane, Saggart, Co Dublin on June 9th, 2015.

He also admitted falsely imprisoning Martin Byrne on the same date.

He was sentenced to six years imprisonment on January 29th, 2018.

Counsel for the Minister for Justice, Ronan Kennedy BL, said Mr Duffy’s arrest in the Republic meant he had breached the conditions of his license not to be a danger to the public”. This meant Duffy was once again subject to the life sentence in Northern Ireland, Mr Kennedy said.