James T. Kelly


extradition, joe doherty, irish republican army, united kingdom, ireland


In this Article, Mr. Kelly summarizes the eight year diplomatic and legal effort to return Joe Doherty, a member of the Provisional Irish Republican Army, from the United States to the United Kingdom, where he was wanted for his role in the death of a British soldier and for his escape from prison. The Article begins by considering the British-Irish conflict over the partition of Ireland and the political and diplomatic role the United States has played in mediating that conflict. It then recounts the unsuccessful efforts of the United States and the United Kingdom to extradite Doherty, and the two governments' renegotiation of their existing extradition treaty so as to have adverse retroactive application to Doherty. This Article then examines the successful effort of the United States Justice Department to deport Doherty to the United Kingdom: including a review of Doherty's initial pleas for asylum and withholding of deportation, his subsequent request-in the face of the revised extradition treaty-.for deportation to the Republic of Ireland, and the judicially-affirmed decisions of two Attorneys General to refuse such request and then to bar Doherty from presenting his claims for asylum and withholding at a reopened hearing.

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