Katic (Appellant) v Republic of Croatia (Respondent) (Gibraltar)
Case ID: JCPC 2020/0041
Jurisdiction: The Supreme Court of Gibraltar
The appeal concerns a challenge to the validity of a European Arrest Warrant issued for the Appellant in February 2019 in Croatia. Where a person has been convicted and sentenced in a requesting state, voluntarily absenting himself from part of those proceedings, and has thereafter acquired residency in the executing state, is the Magistrates’ Court entitled to order that a European Arrest Warrant be executed, in the absence of an undertaking in accordance with sections 8(2) and 8A(3) of the European Arrest Warrant Act 2004? If the answer to that question is no, was the Supreme Court of Gibraltar obligated to allow the appeal, quash the Surrender Order made against the Appellant, and release him from custody?
The Appellant was arrested in Gibraltar pursuant to a European Arrest Warrant issued in Croatia. The Appellant was resident in Gibraltar at the time of his arrest. He had been convicted in absentia of criminal conspiracy to import wholesale quantities of cocaine into Croatia in June 2015 and, after an appeal, sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment. This was subject to a right to a retrial or appeal once the Appellant was returned to Croatia. The Appellant declined to surrender voluntarily. On 3 February 2020, the Magistrates’ Court ordered the Appellant’s surrender (the “Surrender Order”) to Croatia.
The Appellant appealed to the Supreme Court of Gibraltar on the basis that the Magistrates’ Court had no jurisdiction to make the Surrender Order in the absence of any undertaking as required by Sections 8(2) and 8A(3) of the European Arrest Warrant Act 2004. Those provisions require that where a Gibraltarian national or resident is to be surrendered to another Member State to stand trial the requesting state must give an undertaking that following the trial the person will be returned to Gibraltar to serve any custodial sentence. After the Surrender Order was made but before the case was heard at the Supreme Court of Gibraltar, the Croatian authorities provided Gibraltar with an undertaking in accordance with section 8A(3) that if the Appellant was surrendered to Croatia he would, in the event of conviction following his retrial or appeal in Croatia, be returned to Gibraltar to serve any custodial sentence imposed. The Supreme Court of Gibraltar dismissed the appeal and ordered the Appellant’s surrender to Croatia. The Appellant now appeals to the JCPC.
Republic of Croatia
Lord Briggs, Lord Hamblen, Lord Leggatt, Lady Rose, Sir Declan Morgan
Hearing start date
7 July 2022
Hearing finish date
7 July 2022
|7 July 2022
24 November 2022
 UKPC 45