Digest of the Week | Extradition

Canadian Extradited to India Based In Part on Assurances of Humane Treatment

India v. Badesha | 2017 SCC 44 | Supreme Court of Canada

Criminal law --- Extradition proceedings — Extradition from Canada — Order for surrender

Accused were uncle and mother of deceased — Accused were both Canadian citizens and residents, who were of Indian descent — Deceased resided in India — Accused were alleged to have arranged honour killing of deceased, with killing taking place in India — Indian government sought extradition of accused, for offence of conspiracy to commit murder — Canadian justice minister received assurances from Indian government, as to humane treatment of accused — Justice minister ordered accused to be surrendered — Court of appeal overturned justice minister's decision, in 2-1 decision — Crown claimed that decision of justice minister was made properly — Crown appealed to Supreme Court of Canada, seeking to reinstate decision of justice minister — Appeal allowed — Decision was subject to review on reasonableness standard — Minister did take into account evidence that prisoners in India were subject to inhumane treatment — Minister requested that surrender was conditional on efforts to meet accused's medical and safety needs — Minister also received assurance that accused would have access to consular assistance, as needed — It was reasonable for Minister to make decision to surrender accused — There were documented safeguards against possibility of human rights violations — Previous case law had shown it was proper to rely on these assurances from diplomats — India had history of compliance with treaty partners, including Canada — Majority of Court of Appeal did not properly consider above-noted factors.
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