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Man facing 'Silk Road' charges makes illegal extradition claim against Irish government

Gary Davis
Gary Davis

A Wicklow man alleged to be an administrator of the Silk Road website, which dealt with illegal drugs and hacking software has taken to social media, claiming that the government illegally tried to extradite to the US early.

Gary Davis (28) is facing a trial on charges of conspiracy to distribute narcotics, conspiracy to commit computer hacking and conspiracy to commit money laundering.

If convicted in the US, he could receive a life sentence and it is probable that he will be incarcerated pending his trial.

This week Mr Davis took to Facebook to tell his side of the story, writing: “I’m still here through some insane 11th hour work by my legal team. They have managed to wrangle us a Supreme Court Appeal against all odds, and also managed to get bail while awaiting that date.”

“In extradition proceedings you always have a 15 days period to appeal during which extradition cannot occur without the extraditee’s consent.

“However, the government (specifically the so-called Minster of Justice Frances Fitzgerald) decided to act illegally and try to ship me off on March 9th, which was 9 days into my 15-day appeal period.

“They did this without notifying anyone on our side which means that nobody would know they had taken me until I was on US soil and it would be too late to do anything.”

Mr Davis then alleges that no attempt was made to notify him about the intended move.

“They didn’t notify me, my solicitor or my family despite having two US marshals in Dublin waiting to snatch me, with a seat booked for me on a flight last Thursday.”

According to Mr Davis his solicitor only discovered that her client was to be flown to the US by accident after calling the State solicitor’s office.

“My solicitor only found out that any of this was occurring purely by accident (on the afternoon of Tuesday the 7th) when she called the State solicitor’s office as a professional courtesy to let them know we’d be lodging an appeal, at which point she was told that they didn’t think we had any grounds for appeal and my flight had been booked for the morning of Thursday the 9th.”

“She scrambled to the High Court straight after, asking for an urgent appointment to ensure that a stay was in place; this appointment was granted for the following day where the High Court confirmed that a star was in face in place, affirming that the State was acting illegally in attempting to fly me out before my 15 days grace period had finished.”

“If my solicitor had found out 2 hours later on Tuesday the 7th that the U.S and Irish governments had my flight booked it would have been too late to do anything (as the court would have been closed for the day, with no opportunity to arrange anything for Wednesday) and I would have been taken from this country, Illegally, by U.S Marshals.”

However, according to Mr Davis, this wasn’t the end of the State’s attempts to fly him to the U.S.

Mr Davis alleges another attempt was made on March 9.

“My solicitor managed to ensure that I didn’t leave the prison, that the paperwork got there to back up my position and that I was sent back to my cell.

“Five days after the madness I can sit here in my home and realise that I was literally five minutes away from being illegally extradited – or to define it legally, kidnapped by the U.S government – with the full blessings of the Irish government.

“If it wasn’t for the stellar work done by my legal team, he continued, “I would be in a U.S prison right now.

“Is it in any was surprising that both the U.S and Irish governments would act illegally, and with such blatant disregard for the rights of an Irish citizen?

Under Section 29 of the Criminal Courts of Justice Act, 1924 Mr Davis was entitled to 15-days to appeal the verdict.

However solicitor for Mr Davis, Lana Doherty of O’Gorman law confirmed that she received a letter stating that U.S Marshals were on the way over to take Gary Davis on a flight from Dublin on the 9th of March after she had spoken to the State solicitor.

This was six days before his period of appeal had ended.

Mr Davis is fighting his extradition on the grounds that his Asperger’s syndrome is too severe to be properly treated inside the US prison system.

It is alleged that Mr Davis was an administrator of the Silk Road website using the pseudonym "Libertas", according to the Court of Appeal's judgment.

The website is said to have facilitated the sale of illicit drugs including cocaine, crack cocaine, crystal meth and other illegal drugs.

Purchasers of illicit drugs from the website were paid in "Bitcoins" and Silk Road revenue was based on a commission of between 10% and 15% of sale revenue.

Commissions earned by Silk Road are said to run to tens of millions of dollars.

It is alleged that Mr Davis was paid $1,500 per week for his services.

In the course of its investigation of the Silk Road website the FBI arrested a US citizen, Ross Ulbricht, whom it is believed is the owner and operator if the website. It is alleged that Mr Davis' involvement was identified from information extracted from Mr Ulbricht's computers.

Mr Davis is a 28-years-old single man who lives with his parents in Wicklow. He is the youngest of five children, has a poor employment history, is "obsessed with computers" and is described as a "loner, naive and immature".

A spokesperson for the Department of Justice and Equality told the Sunday World: "The department does not comment on individual cases. Countries outside the European Union may make a request through diplomatic channels for extradition to seek the return of a person who is wanted in one of those countries in relation to a crime. "