Liam Campbell cannot get a fair trial in Lithuania

Stop the extradition of Liam Campbell to Lithuaina

Liam Campbell, an alleged Real IRA leader, will argue that he cannot receive a fair trial in Lithuania because his brother’s terrorism conviction was found to have been based on entrapment.

Campbell, 54, of Upper Faughart in north Louth, who was found liable for the 1998 Omagh bomb in a civil action eight years ago, appeared in the High Court in Dublin yesterday to contest his extradition to Lithuania, where he is accused of a Real IRA plot to buy large quantities of explosives and weapons.

Brian Gageby, his barrister, told the court that he wanted an adjournment while he sought an English translation of Michael Campbell’s trial and appeal in Vilnius. Mr Gageby is preparing to argue that Liam Campbell cannot receive a fair trial, which is required under Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Campbell’s brother was convicted in Lithuania in 2011 of conspiracy to buy weapons and explosives, following a joint MI5-Lithuanian police operation. Michael Campbell was jailed for twelve years but his conviction was overturned on appeal in 2013 on the grounds that he was entrapped by MI5. Liam Campbell is now seeking a transcript of that appeal to use in his case.

Since Michael Campbell returned to Ireland the highest court in Lithuania overturned the appeal, finding that the appeal court erred in putting too much weight on entrapment defence. As a result Michael Campbell may also be extradited back to Lithuania.

Judge Aileen Donnelly agreed to adjourn Liam Campbell’s case for a month yesterday to allow the state and the defence to prepare documents.

Campbell is receiving free legal aid to fight extradition, claiming that he will not get a fair trial and also that prison conditions in Lithuania are so bad that they violate Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The article prohibits extradition if there is a “substantial risk” that the person will undergo inhumane or degrading treatment.

He won on Article 3 grounds when Lithuania sought to extradite him from Northern Ireland, after which he was released by the High Court in Belfast and was rearrested in the Republic. Campbell’s co-accused, Brendan McGuigan, 36, of Omeath, Co Louth, was previously released by the High Court in Dublin, also because prison conditions in Lithuania would be a violation of his rights under Article 3.

Both men are wanted in Lithuania for allegedly organising a Real IRA explosives and weapons importation scheme. A Lithuanian arrest warrant read in court states that Campbell “made arrangements for illegal possession of a considerable amount of powerful firearms, ammunition, explosive devices and substances” to be exported from Lithuania to Ireland for use by a “terrorist grouping”.

The cargo was allegedly to include sniper rifles, rocket launchers, RPG-7 rockets, hand-grenades and Semtex explosives.

Campbell was allegedly a senior Real IRA member when the offences were committed in late 2006 and early 2007 and is alleged to have met with a British intelligence officer posing as an east European arms dealer.

with many thanks to: Irish Republican Prisoner News.

General Advice when subject to a PSNI stop and search:

The Irish Law & Democracy Committee

General Advice when subject to a PSNI stop and search:


  • Remain calm and speak clearly
  • Refer to the advice card and see what questions you are obliged to answer and what the PSNI are entitled to do under terms of the legislation.
  • Do not stop voluntarily: let the PSNI stop you and always ask why and under what legislation you are being stopped. By stopping when a PSNI  officer approaches you are consenting and have stopped voluntarily, and when a person consents there is no requirement to use the legislation. Wait until they tell you to stop or hold out their hand to indicate you to stop.
  • Likewise DO NOT CONSENT to a search – let them tell you the legislation they are searching you under – remain passive – but you are under no obligation to assist in a search in any way, therefore DO NOT ASSIST THEM in their search of you or your vehicle –  if they wish to search you or  your vehicle let them do it.
  • No reasonable suspicion is required for a substantial amount of the legislation, and where it is required, it is used on the basis of  the definition of terrorism, as well as on behaviour and current intelligence which is extremely broad and has a very low threshold.
  • If you are in doubt about any aspect of a stop and search or feel  vulnerable exercise your right to silence and contact your solicitor – as no matter what legislation you are stopped under you have the right to seek legal advice. However, this does not mean the PSNI have to stop with their search/questions while you consult with your solicitor, they may continue with the search/questions.
  • Always ask for a search record (blue slip) you are entitled to one unless  circumstances are not practicable for the officer to fill it in. Ask for the    details of the officer conducting the stop/search. If refused take note of number of officer (lapels) date, time and location of stop and search.

Terrorism Act 2000

Section 41Power of Arrest for ‘Terrorist Offences’

“A Constable may arrest without warrant a person whom he reasonably suspects to be a   terrorist’ – reasonable suspicion based on behaviour or current intelligence

No specific offence needs to be suspected – and PSNI not required to give detailed reasons at the point of arrest.

Section 43 – Stop & Search for items related to ‘Terrorism’.

In order to stop and search an individual an officer must have reasonable grounds that the individual is a terrorist. Like s41 this procedure can be based on behaviour or current        intelligence.

Justice & Security Act 2007

Section 21 – Stop to ascertain identity and account for movements.

This can be done for as ‘long as necessary’ – Re Mooney as long as 1hour 25 minutes was deemed necessary by the Court.

Includes whilst in a vehicle or in person. It is an offence to fail to stop or to answer the relevant questions.

Questioning includes: – in regard to identity (name, address, DOB  and movements (coming from and going to)

Only British Army can ask anything in relation to a recent incident (explosion or shooting).

Section 24 – Search for items such as transmitters, ammunition & wireless                   apparatus.

Allows for search of person, vehicle or premises

In a person search there is no power to remove any clothing other than outer coat, jacket or headgear.

Reasonable grounds are NOT required in a public place but ARE REQUIRED in a private place. 

WITH MANY THANKS TO : The Irish Law & Democracy Committee

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