The opinion of the court was delivered by: NEWCOMER
This case poses a question rarely addressed in the context of an international request for extradition: whether the demanding country, through the United States government, has satisfied its burden of establishing that there is probable cause to believe James Gerard Barr committed attempted murder -- the offense he is charged with in Northern Ireland.
For reasons described below, I conclude that this burden has not been met, and I will therefore deny the government's petition for extradition.
submitted a brief with attached exhibits as the total evidence in support of the request for extradition. Respondent, James Gerard Barr, does not dispute the authenticity or admissibility of any of the government's papers. Mr. Barr did not submit any evidence on his behalf, nor request an evidentiary hearing in order to do so. Thus I am not faced with any evidentiary or procedural issues and this opinion relies on all of the submitted papers.
James Gerard Barr is charged by the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland with the attempted murder of Marine Kevin Lee Harris, a British soldier.
On July 14, 1981, at or about 7:10 p.m. a British military patrol was walking down the Falls Road in Belfast, Northern Ireland, when Marine Kevin Lee Harris was hit by bullets in the upper left arm and right thigh. The patrol consisted of five British soldiers, including Marine Harris. From the statements submitted, it appears that the gunmen shooting at the patrol were firing from the corner of Sevastopol Street and the Falls Road. Apparently none of the gunmen were hit. No other British soldier suffered any injuries. Marine Harris was treated at the Musgrave Park Hospital and subsequently released in good condition. Military personnel and police who searched the area recovered spent bullets, but did not discover any of the gunmen.
In the meantime Jim Barr from Twinbrook who was a volunteer in the Andersontown Unit arrived in his car which was a Renault 5 green color. I told him we were going to have a go at the Brits. I also told him to scout around the top end of Clonard Street for any other foot patrols.
Mr. Kirkpatrick does not state that Mr. Barr agreed to scout around, nor that Mr. Barr drove off in any direction. None of the statements of the British soldiers mentions Mr. Barr, nor in any way even suggest he was present during the attack.
Section 3184 of Title 18 controls international extradition proceedings:
Whenever there is a treaty or convention for extradition between the United States and any foreign government, any justice or judge of the United States, or any magistrate authorized so to do by a court of the United States, or any judge of a court of record of general jurisdiction of any State, may, upon complaint made under oath, charging any person found within his jurisdiction, with having committed within the jurisdiction of any such foreign government any of the crimes provided for by such treaty or convention, issue his warrant for the apprehension of the person so charged, that he may be brought before such justice, judge, or magistrate, to the end that the evidence of criminality may be heard and considered. If, on such hearing, he deems the evidence sufficient to sustain the charge under the provisions of the proper treaty or convention, he shall certify the same, together with a copy of all the testimony taken before him, to the Secretary of State, that a warrant may issue upon the requisition of the proper authorities of such foreign government, for the surrender of such person, according to the stipulations of the treaty or convention; and he shall issue his warrant for the commitment of the person so charged to the proper jail, there to remain until such surrender shall be made.
The government has the burden of establishing four elements in order to sustain its burden in an extradition proceeding: (1) that there are criminal charges pending against Mr. Barr in Northern Ireland; (2) that the crimes with which Mr. Barr is charged are extraditable ones under the treaty between the United States and the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland; (3) that Mr. Barr is the individual actually sought by the authorities in Northern Ireland; and (4) that, based on the papers submitted by the government, there is probable cause to believe that the crime charged has been committed and that there is probable cause to believe that Mr. Barr committed the crime charged.