judicial review | 

Killer Declan ‘Whacker’ Duffy brings High Court challenge over Republic prison transfer refusal

Duffy is currently serving a life sentence for the murder of a British army sergeant in Derby, England while a member of the INLA

Declan “Whacker” Duffy

Aodhan O'FaolainIndependent.ie

Convicted killer Declan 'Whacker' Duffy has brought a High Court challenge against the Minister for Justice's refusal to allow him to be repatriated to Ireland where he can serve out the remainder of his prison sentence.

Duffy is currently serving a life sentence for the murder of a British army sergeant outside a recruitment office in Derby, England, in 1992 while a member of the republican paramilitary group the Irish National Liberation Army (INLA). He is currently in custody in Maghaberry Prison in Lisburn.

He was extradited from this jurisdiction to the UK in 2020.

Represented by Michael Lynn SC, Mark Lynam BL and solicitor Ciaran Mulholland, Duffy has brought a High Court judicial review challenge against the minister's decision declining his request for repatriation to the State under the 1995 Transfer of Prisons Act.

In his action he wants the High Court to make an order quashing that decision.

In the alternative he seeks an order compelling the minister to provide adequate reasons for the refusal to allow him to transfer to a prison south of the border.

The application for permission to bring his challenge was briefly mentioned before the High Court on Monday when Mr Justice Mark Heslin granted Duffy's lawyers permission to formally file the proposed action against the minister.

Permission was required from the judge because Duffy's lawyers have encountered difficulties in getting access to their client for the purpose of swearing an affidavit to ground his judicial review application.

Duffy (47), with a last address at Hannover Street West in Dublin, was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of British army sergeant Michael Newman in Derby City in 1992 but was released on license by a Northern Irish parole board in March 2013.

He was arrested by gardaí in December 2015 and later jailed by the Special Criminal Court for six years for falsely imprisoning Martin Byrne in Rathcoole/Saggart, Co Dublin on June 9, 2015.

Following that conviction, on June 6, 2016, the Under Secretary of State for Northern Ireland revoked Mr Duffy's license and recalled him to prison.

A European Arrest Warrant (EAW) was issued for his arrest. Duffy's extradition was on hold while he served his sentence for false imprisonment.

The High Court in 2020 made an order for his extradition to the UK after refusing his bid to remain and serve out his sentence in this jurisdiction on humanitarian grounds.

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