Kakis’ extradition was sought by Cyprus in relation to an EOKA killing in April 1973. Although a warrant for Kakis’ arrest had been issued that very night, he had escaped into the mountains and remained hidden for 15 months. Subsequently, he settled in England with the apparent approval of the Cyprus Government and so too did a Mr Alexandrou, Kakis’s only alibi witness, who swore that he would not return to give evidence in Cyprus. The House considered all the events that would not have happened had the trial of the accused taken place with ordinary promptitude and the extent to which they would result in prejudice to the accused in the conduct of the trial.
Held: Lord Diplock said: ‘Unjust’ I regard as directed primarily to the risk of prejudice to the accused in the conduct of the trail itself, ‘oppressive’ as directed to hardship of the accused resulting from changes in his circumstances that have occurred during the period to be taken into consideration; but there if room for overlapping, and between them they would cover all cases where to return him would not be fair. Delay in the commencement or conduct of extradition proceedings which is brought about by the accused himself by fleeing the country, concealing his whereabouts or evading arrest cannot, in my view, be relied upon as a ground for holding it to be either unjust or oppressive to return him. Any difficulties that he may encounter in the conduct of this defence in consequence of delay due to such cause are of his own choice and making. Save in the most exceptional circumstances it would be neither unjust nor oppressive that he should be required to accept them’.
Lord Edmund-Davies disagreed: ‘In my respectful judgement, on the contrary, the answer to the question of where responsibility lies for the delay may well have a direct bearing on the issues of injustice and oppression. Thus, the fact that the requesting government is shown to have been inexcusably dilatory in taking steps to bring the fugitive to justice may serve to establish both the injustice and the oppressiveness of making an order for his return, whereas the issue might be left in some doubt if the only known fact related to the extent of the passage of time, and it has been customary in practice to advert to that factor: see, for example, Reg v Governor of Pentonville Prison, ex parte Teja  2 QB 274, 290, per Lord Parker CJ and the speeches in this House in Reg v Governor of Pentonville Prison, ex parte Narang  AC 247.’
Lord Keith of Kinkel said: ‘the case of Narang 1978 AC 247 also indicates that it may be relevant to consider the extent to which the passage of time has been due to dilatoriness on the part of the requesting authority.’
Lord Diplock said: ”Unjust’ I regard as directed primarily to the risk of prejudice to the accused in the conduct of the trial itself, ‘oppressive’ as directed to hardship to the accused resulting from changes in his circumstances that have occurred during the period to be taken into consideration; but there is room for overlapping, and between them they would cover all cases where to return him would not be fair. Delay in the commencement or conduct of extradition proceedings which is brought about by the accused himself by fleeing the country, concealing his whereabouts or evading arrest cannot, in my view, be relied upon as a ground for holding it to be either unjust or oppressive to return him. Any difficulties that he may encounter in the conduct of his defence in consequence of the delay due to such causes are of his own choice and making. Save in the most exceptional circumstances it would be neither unjust nor oppressive that he should be required to accept them.
As respects delay which is not brought about by the acts of the accused himself, however, the question of where responsibility lies for the delay is not generally relevant. What matters is not so much the cause of such delay as its effect; or, rather, the effects of those events which would not have happened before the trial of the accused if it had taken place with ordinary promptitude. So where the application for discharge under section 8(3) is based upon the ‘passage of time’ under paragraph (b) and not on absence of good faith under paragraph (c), the court is not normally concerned with what could be an invidious task of considering whether mere inaction of the requisitioning government or its prosecuting authorities which resulted in delay was blameworthy or otherwise. Your Lordships have no occasion to do so in the instant case.’
Diplock L, Edmund-Davies L, Keith of Kinkel L
 1 WLR 779,  2 All ER 634
Fugitive Offenders’ Act 1967 8(3)(b)
England and Wales
Cited – Regina v Abu Hamza CACD 28-Nov-2006
The defendant had faced trial on terrorist charges. He claimed that delay and the very substantial adverse publicity had made his fair trial impossible, and that it was not an offence for a foreign national to solicit murders to be carried out . .
Cited – Krzyzowski v Circuit Court In Gliwice, Poland Admn 23-Nov-2007
Extradition of the defendant to Poland was sought, the court saying he had fled his trial for burglaries in 1999. The defendant argued that his extradition would now be unfair.
Held: The judge was right to hold that his ruling of deliberate . .
Cited – Norris v United States of America and others HL 12-Mar-2008
The detainee appealed an order for extradition to the USA, saying that the offence (price-fixing) was not one known to English common law. The USA sought his extradition under the provisions of the Sherman Act.
Held: It was not, and it would . .
Cited – Goodyer and Gomes v Government of Trinidad and Tobago Admn 22-Aug-2007
The applicants complained of delays in their extraditions.
Held: ‘It seems to us that, whether the concurrent fault of the requesting state is regarded as keeping the chain of causation intact, albeit attenuated, or is regarded as an . .
Cited – Gomes v Trinidad and Tobago HL 29-Apr-2009
Each appellant challenged orders for their extradition, saying that the delay had been too prolonged, and that detention in Trinidad’s appalling jails would be an infringement of their human rights.
Held: The House had to consider its own . .
Cited – HH v Deputy Prosecutor of The Italian Republic, Genoa SC 20-Jun-2012
In each case the defendant sought to resist European Extradition Warrants saying that an order would be a disporportionate interference in their human right to family life. The Court asked whether its approach as set out in Norris, had to be amended . .
Cited – La Torre v Italy Admn 20-Jun-2007
Laws LJ considered the decision in Kakis and said: ‘All the circumstances must be considered in order to judge whether the unjust/oppressive test is met. Culpable delay on the part of the State may certainly colour that judgment and may sometimes be . .
Cited – Spanovic v Government of Croatia and Another Admn 15-May-2009
The appellant appealed against an order for his extradition to face charges of having committed war crimes. He said that his menta condition was such that ‘It is plain to us that the bar is set very high, and the graver the charge the higher the . .
Cited – Government of The Republic of South Africa v Dewani Admn 31-Jan-2014
Cited – United States of America v Assange Admn 10-Dec-2021
Late evidence from requesting state was admissible
The USA sought A’s extradition. It had been previously refused on the grounds of expected suicide of A if subjected to US prison conditions.
Held: The order refusing extradition was quashed, and the matter referred to the Magistrates’ Court . .
Cited – Konecny v District Court In Brno-Venkov, Czech Republic SC 27-Feb-2019
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 10 January 2022; Ref: scu.187954