Toben Case – A Victory For Exactitude!
By Michele Renouf
Oct. 30, 2008
A vital legal precedent has been dispelled!Ã‚Â On Wednesday 29th October at 2pm, within ten minutes, a victory for exactitude was declared! The German onslaught, charging with a stick and balloon on a trojan horse to breach the bastion of British jurisprudence fell at the first professional lance, to the British empirical tradition.Ã‚Â Defeat for what the Deputy Senior District Judge at the City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court on London’s famous Horseferry Road called “vague and imprecise” concepts which “muddy the waters” of the judicial process.
A European Arrest Warrant was executed against a peaceful Australian academic, Dr. Fredrick TÃƒÂ¶ben whilst he sat on an American Airlines aircraft in transit at Heathrow airport.Ã‚Â Since October 1st, he has been sitting in a Wandsworth prison cell, facing extradition and five years in Mannheim prison, Germany’s dungeon for political prisoners of conscience. The case has prompted concern that European laws restricting academic freedoms might be extended to Britain via the back door of the European Arrest Warrant.
However Dr. TÃƒÂ¶ben and his defence team succeeded in having the extradition process discharged under Section 2 of the Extradition Act, because the warrant was not particularised and the conduct alleged was vague.
See the British press report of Dr. TÃƒÂ¶ben’s victory:
Dr. TÃƒÂ¶ben’s victory clearly wrong footed the Daily Mail’s journalists. First described by the Mail at 5pm in their story “TÃƒÂ¶ben wins his case!” as “a prominent Australian academic”, just over two hours later it had been amended to “controversial Australian academic”. Then, within another hour the Mail backtracked again to describe Dr TÃƒÂ¶ben as just plain “Australian academic”, the qualifying adjectives having proved too problematic…
The court now awaits an appeal by the German prosecuting authorities, who are represented in the U.K. by the Crown even though Dr. TÃƒÂ¶ben’s alleged conduct does not constitute an offence in the U.K. In the meantime, Dr. TÃƒÂ¶ben has been granted bail but with stringent bail conditions, the most challenging being a cash security of Ã‚Â£100,000.