Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Nationality, Insanity and Asylum Act 2002

I have had a couple of clients that have (sort of) stayed with me
I opened a brief a while ago (god it is an eternity since I have had solicitors that produce briefs, most probably have no idea of their purpose), it was an Algerian, and yes he had been arrested, though not, unusually for shoplifting (though you will be pleased to know, other peoples' property was found in his house).
No as I perused the brief I was met with the strange introductory sentence...
"Your client was arrested and charged with attempting to manufacture chemical weapons contrary to Section 1(1) of the Criminal Attempts Act 1981..."
And he was mad
And locked in Belmarsh (no surprise there)
He genuinely seemed shocked to be there ("its full of real terrorists")
He was also mad, he believed he was possessed by a spirit a Djinn, which apparently is a spirit which visits, according to the appellant, bad muslims who are either not devout enough or who have mixed to much with the west. Apparently the spirit talked to him.
At least he had company in his cell.
The criminal charges were dropped, but the Secretary of State did not want him being admitted to bail.
At the bail hearing the Home Office representative was attended by a host of young, earnest people in suits, who I have never, ever seen working in the Home Office before and who seemed strangely reluctant to identify themselves...
Bail was obtained - much to everyone (including the appellant, and presumably his spirit's) surprise.
Another victory for liberty.


Radagast said...

LOL. You should drop a line to my Human Right professor, Costas Douzinas, at Birkbeck. I doubt he'll remember me (I was but a modest 2:1 student), but he's a fabulous bloke. Learned. He might be interesting to talk to, on this subject (viz: the ernest types in suits).


Charles said...

thanks I may do, it is certainly an interesting area, and one where if you do not have a vote or are a British Citizen you are in an odd position