European rights court raps Italy over expulsion

27th February 2009, Comments 0 comments

The Tunisian terror suspect claimed he faced torture back home.

Strasbourg -- The European Court of Human Rights earlier this week rapped Italy for flouting its order and extraditing a Tunisian terror suspect despite his plea that he faced torture back home.

Essid Sami Ben Khemais had been given a 10-year prison sentence in absentia by a Tunisian military tribunal in January 2002 for membership in a terrorist organisation.

In March 2006, an Italian court ordered his extradition to Tunisia over a case involving violence. He had earlier been awarded a five-year jail sentence in Italy after being convicted in Milan for criminal association with the intent to obtain and transport arms, explosives and chemicals.

Ben Khemais had in January 2007 urged Europe's top rights court to intervene, arguing that he faced torture. The court then ordered Italy not to expel him on the ground that this would violate European rights norms.

But Italian authorities expelled him on June 3 last year and filed documents before the European court from Tunisian authorities guaranteeing that Ben Khemais would not be tortured.

The court said the Tunisian guarantees were insufficient and said Ben Khemais should be paid 10,000 euros (12,732 dollars) in damages.


0 Comments To This Article