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Man caught with child porn in UK must wait to hear outcome of legal challenge

Julian Myerscough
Julian Myerscough

A law lecturer who took a ferry to Ireland after an Ispwich jury convicted him of possessing child porn, must wait to hear the outcome of his latest legal challenge.

Julian Myerscough (54), formerly of Alexandra Road, Lowestoft in Suffolk, was found guilty by a jury of 13 counts of possession of indecent images of a child at Ipswich Crown Court on September 30, 2015.

He was also found guilty of three counts of breaching a Sexual Offences Prevention Order that had been placed on him following a previous conviction for a similar offence.

Although Mr Myerscough had been in Ipswich Crown Court the day he was found guilty, he did not return after lunch when the jury reached its verdict.

He was convicted in his absence and police applied for a warrant for his arrest. Once the arrest warrant was issued police alerted the port and airport authorities and contacted gardai as they feared he would flee to Ireland. 

That night gardai confirmed that Mr Myerscough was on board a ferry from Holyhead in Wales heading to Dublin.

He was arrested on October 2 at a hotel in Dublin on foot of a European Arrest Warrant.

High Court judge Ms Justice Aileen Donnelly ordered Mr Myerscough's surrender to UK authorities on February 29. On March 11, she refused leave to appeal.

On March 21, lawyers for Mr Myerscough made an application under Article 40 of the Constitution challenging his detention in Arbour Hill Prison.

Counsel for the Governor of Arbour Hill Prison, Seán Gillane SC, told the Court of Appeal yesterday that the expectation was that those proceedings would be determined by March 22 but lawyers for Mr Myerscough sought “further time”.

Mr Gillane said the 25 day time period, following the order for surrender, was approaching and "arrangements had been put in place".

As a result, Mr Gillane said, lawyers for the Justice Minister, on March 23, successfully applied to Mr Justice Michael Twomey for a stay on the surrender order.

 It was done “in an abundance of caution for Mr Myerscough's rights,” Mr Gillane said.

The Article 40 High Court application was heard in April.

Judgment was delivered in June. It found Mr Myerscough's case was not arguable and the propositions put forward on his behalf were "unsustainable". 

Counsel for Mr Myerscough, Dr Michael Ford SC, submitted to the Court of Appeal yesterday that the High Court proceedings were unfair.

However, Mr Gillane asked the three-judge court to strike out the appeal on the basis that it was “frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of process.”