Appeal Court strikes out el-Faisal case, way now clear for extradition
Livern Barrett, Senior Staff Reporter
The way is now clear for controversial Jamaican-born Muslim cleric Sheikh Abdullah el-Faisal to be extradited to the United States to face terrorism-related charges.
This follows an order by the Court of Appeal striking out el-Faisal's legal challenge to a Full Court ruling.
Last year, el Faisal had made a habeas corpus application to the Full Court to be released after the parish court had ordered his extradition.
But in a unanimous ruling, also last year, Supreme Court Justices Carol Lawrence-Beswick, Kissock Laing, and Stephanie Jackson-Haisley declared that a writ of habeas corpus would not be ordered for el-Faisal’s discharge from custody.
The cleric then took the matter to the Court of Appeal.
However, after a year he did nothing to advance the process.
The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP), which acts on behalf of the requesting state in extradition cases, then applied for the appeal to be struck out saying despite at least two warnings from the court, el-Faisal had failed to meet at least two mandatory requirements.
The Gleaner understands that el-Faisal’s attorneys acknowledged, in court documents, that they had explained to him that they could find no grounds to appeal the Full Court decision and, therefore, could not resist the application by the ODPP.
The Appeal Court cited both issues as the bases for the order to strike out el-Faisal’s case.
Meanwhile, the ODPP says all related documents have now been sent to Justice Minister Delroy Chuck who is required to sign a surrender warrant for el-Faisal.
El-Faisal was arrested by the Jamaican police in August 2017 on an extradition warrant after US authorities in the state of New York disclosed that he was indicted on terrorism-related charges.
According to the indictment, which was handed down in the New York Supreme Court, the 56-year-old, whose given name is Trevor William Forrest, has been charged with soliciting or providing support for an act of terrorism in the first degree as a crime of terrorism and four other related counts.
In May 2018, after a hearing in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court, Parish Judge Broderick Smith ordered that he should be extradited.
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