District Judge Zani, on 6 February 2020, found Jabir Motiwala’s extradition to the US to be compatible with his Convention Rights within the meaning of the Human Rights Act 1998. Further, the judge found there to be no bars to his extradition and sent the matter to the Secretary of State for her to make the final decision as to whether or not to order extradition.
Mr Motiwala is wanted in the US to stand trial on charges of conspiracy to commit money laundering and conspiracy to collect credit extensions. He is also charged with conspiracy to import narcotics, a charge carrying a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.
According to the information contained in the US extradition request, Mr Motiwala is alleged to be an important member of an international criminal organisation based in Pakistan, India and the UAE. Mr Motiwala denied these allegations, telling the court that he comes from a well-respected Karachi business family.
Counsel for Mr Motiwala argued that the prison conditions in the US were such that they would violate his rights under Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights, the prohibition on torture and “inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment”. Expert witnesses told Westminster Magistrates’ Court that extradition would put Mr Motiwala’s life at risk due to the condition of US jails, and as a result of his mental health, he would be at a high risk of suicide. The Court was not persuaded.
Mr Motiwala can apply to appeal this decision to the High Court.