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Thursday, 10 May 2012

Despite the words in opposition two years into government Gary Mckinnon is still fighting extradition

On the 15th of December 2009 the leader of the Liberal Democrats, Nick Clegg, along with politicians from the Conservatives demonstrated outside the Home Office in favour of Gary McKinnon and called for Gary McKinnon to be tried here in Britain. Gary McKinnon who suffers from aspergers syndrome admits "computer misuse" but the alleged crime happened in the United Kingdom not the United States therefore any trial should be held here.

The extradition treaty which the United States Government is trying to extradite Mr McKinnon under was signed under the Royal Prerogative by the then, Labour, Prime Minister Tony Blair. It shamefully allows a British subject to be extradited to the United States without the United States authorities providing any evidence to back up their allegations. However the other way round is a no-no. This lopsided agreement only applies one way, a United States citizen can not be extradited in the same way.

In July 2009 the Leader of the Conservative party, David Cameron, said 'Gary McKinnon is paying the price for the spinelessness of Labour MPs. It should still mean something to be a British citizen - with the full protection of the British Parliament, rather than a British Government trying to send you off to a foreign court. I am disappointed that some of the Members of Parliament who signed up to do something about this did not follow through when it came to the vote.'

Earlier the same day, 74 Labour MPs who signed written motions backing Mr McKinnon or demanding a review of extradition agreements with the U.S. failed to oppose the party line. A demand to review the Extradition Act 2003 was defeated by 290 votes to 236. During the debate the Labour MP (now Independent pending a prosecution) Dennis McShane suggested Mr McKinnon was faking his Aspergers which Janis Sharp, Gary's mothers replied 'It was an absolutely awful, cheap shot. It is a horrendous suggestion. It also shows his ignorance.'

I am now wondering as both David Cameron, Prime Minister and Nick Clegg, Deputy Prime Minister were infavour of a review of the extradition treaty in question in 2009 but two years into government have done nothing about it. They could of put it before parliament to vote it off the statute - they've not done it. They could of demanded the United States government allow a renegotiation - they've not done it. They could of simply ruled that Mr McKinnon be put through the legal system in the United Kingdom - they've not done it.

So before the election they supported Gary McKinnon they called on Labour to "find their moral compass" they called Labour MPs "spineless". Words and sentiments I agree with however two years into this Tory-led government when you look around the cabinet table - its not just Labour MPs who've had their spines taken out!

This Tory-led government are weak, cowardly and totally contemptible. To make a vulnerable person believe that he will be helped before an election then to do nothing about it after the election is gutter politics of the lowest order. Frankly if Mr Cameron and Mr Clegg left the political stage - who exactly would miss them? I doubt Gary McKinnon and Janis Sharp would.