Introduction of the Extradition law in India: – International crime is becoming more prevalent. Many major crimes now have international repercussions. Even in instances of traditional crime, criminals often cross borders to evade arrest. According to the conventional notion of legal code territoriality, a state would not rigidly adhere to its legal code to acts done outside its own borders.
However, there is an increasing recognition that states should work together to combat criminality and stop crime on a global scale. Though states generally refuse to impose direct criminal punishments for crimes committed abroad (unless in extreme cases of extraterritoriality), they are usually willing to work together to bring criminals to justice.
The Indian Extradition Act of 1962
It controls the extradition of a fugitive/wanted criminal from India. This applies to both extraditions to India and extraditions from India to foreign countries. Extradition could be based on a treaty signed between India & another nation. Presently, India has extradition treaties with 48 nations. Additionally, India has extradition agreements with ten other nations.
For an extradition offender who is formally accused of, charged with, or found guilty, A Request for Extradition will be initiated against the accused.
Extradition requires the following conditions
- The applicable crime is serious enough.
- The person actually sought is the subject of a serious matter.
- The event in issue violates the law in both nations.
- The extradited individual is entitled to a fair trial in the recipient nation.
India’s Extradition Procedure
- The nation or Interpol is informed about fugitive criminals sought in other nations.
- The CBI’s Interpol branch then forwards the information to the appropriate police departments.
- Officials in charge of immigration also receive the information.
- After that, the 1962 statute can be applied.
Significance of extradition
Extradition is important legally because it allows fugitives to face a trial in the nation where they committed serious crimes. To escape the jurisdiction of local law enforcement agencies, fugitives move to foreign nations to evade their own country’s legislation. Extradition ensures that such perpetrators are apprehended as quickly as possible.
Basic Principals governing extradition
Principle of Offense Seriousness
Extradition is usually only permitted for significantly more serious offences, not for Petty or minor offences.
Dual Criminality Principle
This is the most crucial fundamental regulating Extradition Law. This necessitates that the fugitive’s alleged crime be a crime both within the requesting jurisdiction and outside.
A specialty rule provides that when a fugitive criminal is extradited for a certain crime, he is only prosecuted for that offence. If the requesting state believes it is necessary to prosecute the extradited fugitive for a few other offences committed prior to his extradition, the fugitive should be given to the specified order previously.
Here are a few examples of common extradition barriers
- Failure to satisfy dual criminality – A state may deny extradition if the offence for which extradition is sought is not a crime there.
- Political crimes: The majority of countries reject the extradition of accused of political crimes. Terrorist offences & violent crimes are excluded.
- The possibilities for specific types of punishment — if the accused is likely to be subjected to torture or the death penalty in the requesting State, the requested State has the right to refuse extradition.
- Jurisdiction: Having jurisdiction over a crime allows one to reject extradition.
Indian nationals who commit crimes in West Asia or the Gulf states and return to India are not extradited to those states. Due to bilateral agreements with these nations that forbid (with the exception of Oman) the extradition of their own citizens, they are subject to prosecution in India in compliance with Indian Law.
Conclusion of the Extradition law in India
The Indian endeavor to prevent the flight of economic offenders through the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill,2018, on the other hand, exposes numerous grey areas that must be adequately restricted while designing the Act to ensure that the aim is met. According to the aforementioned analysis of its provisions, there is a vast scope of unrestricted power bestowed upon the Authorized Office far beyond what has been conferred by the Prevention of Money Laundering Act,2002, which may result in dilution of the Act’s goal.
Furthermore, these rules may be challenged on their constitutionality because they contravene fundamental precepts of criminal jurisprudence & natural justice, compromising the right of economic offenders to a fair trial. If legal gaps allow economic offenders to avoid group action, the full objective of an extradition treaty between the UK and India has been violated.
The financial capability of such perpetrators does not provide a reasonable justification or protection from punishment for such crimes.