Extradition steps to be taken against wanted man living in Norfolk
PUBLISHED: 09:43 16 July 2015 | UPDATED: 09:43 16 July 2015
Extradition steps are due to begin against a man wanted on serious charges related to alleged domestic violence and demanding dowry in India - after we tracked down the accused and brought the case to the attention of the authorities.
The EDP this week confronted Ahmed Anees Hussain, who has been living in Norfolk, as to why he had not answered the criminal case launched four years ago in his native India.
Mr Hussain protested his innocence and pledged to face up to the accusations within the next 12 months.
However, we have notified Indian police of his whereabouts.
Our findings have also been passed on to British police but they are powerless to act unless asked to do so by the Home Office, which will not comment on the case.
Yesterday, police in India confirmed they will soon begin steps to issue a Red Corner Notice, which requests Interpol to seek the arrest of someone with a view to their extradition, against Mr Hussain.
Bengaluru City Police commissioner MN Reddi said: “A Look Out notice is issued against the accused. We will soon issue a Red Corner Notice.”
Mr Reddi failed to respond to repeated requests for more information regarding the steps they would take and the likely timescale.
As reported yesterday, Mr Hussain’s ex-wife Fathima Sumaya Khan, who previously lived in north Norfolk, has fought for him to be deported since September 2011, when Bengaluru Police issued charges under the Dowry Prohibition Act and Indian Penal Code, against Mr Hussain, as well as his sister and mother.
The sections of the law they are charged under includes accusations of “subjecting her to cruelty”, “criminal intimidation” and “giving”, “taking” or “demanding” dowry.
Documents show that Mr Hussain is listed by the courts in India as having “absconded” and that a Look Out Circular has been issued against him for each of the last four years.
While Mr Hussain’s sister and mother have appeared before the court and been bailed, Mr Hussain has failed to respond to the authorities.
Commenting on the latest developments, Ms Khan pleaded with the British authorities to act as soon as the notice is made.
The 32-year-old said: “I have been fighting for justice with great patience since 2011.
“I have been leading a miserable life. A life filled with sadness and hopelessness.
“The Bengaluru police have been sitting on the case for the last four years doing nothing and now is the time to act. I hope after having seen these articles it will force them to act.
“I also want David Cameron to please look into my case and deport my ex-husband to India so that he faces imminent arrest and faces a court here.”
The office of the prime minister did not comment when contacted by the EDP.
The case has raised questions as to how easy it can be for those wanted on criminal charges in another country to evade the courts by living in the United Kingdom.
The Muslim couple had an arranged marriage in Bangalore, now known as Bengaluru, in May 2010.
A week before the wedding, Mr Hussain’s family allegedly demanded expensive gifts and jewellery in payment of dowry, a serious crime in India. This is something he denies.
Shortly after their wedding the couple moved to Norfolk, where Mr Hussain had been living since 2007, and she claims this is when his behaviour worsened. She returned to Bengaluru in October 2011 and severed contact with her husband, later filing for divorce.
Ms Khan’s father, Basheer
Ahamed Khan, a retired senior police officer, said: “I request the honourable prime minister of the UK, Mr David Cameron and the honourable
prime minister of India, Narendra Modi, to help my daughter get justice and give a new life to her. It is a pained father and mother’s plea.”
When confronted, Mr Hussain vehemently denied all of the accusations made against him, claiming he just “wanted to make her happy”.
He claims that he fully intends to face the charges, but he can’t afford to go back and answer bail and then go back at a later date for a trial.
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A DUTY TO ANSWER THE CHARGES
Whether someone is innocent or guilty is a matter for the courts to decide, and if the authorities see fit to press charges, that person has a duty to answer them.
That is the reason why we were happy to investigate the case involving Ahmed Anees Hussain after being approached by his ex-wife.
It also did not seem right that in this modern world of instant communication that someone could seemingly so easily evade facing charges by simply carrying on with their lives in another country.
It begs the obvious question as to how many others are doing exactly the same?
And those feelings were intensified by just how easy it was for our reporter to not only track down Mr Hussain, but set up a meeting with him.
The electoral roll gave us details of his previous accommodation and after a few quick calls we were able to establish not only his telephone number but current residence in Norwich city centre.
Mr Hussain was very happy to meet us and, in his own words, give his side of the story.
So happy in fact, you couldn’t help but wonder why that wasn’t a conversation being had between him and the authorities.
NO REASON NOT TO ACT
A legal expert has claimed there are no obvious legal hurdles to seeking the extradition of Ahmed Anees Hussain – but that it relies on the “will of the Indian authorities” to act.
Jasvinder Nakhwal, chairman of the Extradition Lawyers’ Association and partner at Peters & Peters Solicitors, said she could see no reason why India would not apply for extradition.
“On the brief information available publicly on this case, I would expect the Indian authorities to be able to make an extradition request on which the British authorities could act,” she said. Instead, Indian police are taking steps to issue an Interpol Red Notice against Mr Hussain, which requests Interpol to seek arrest of someone with a view to their extradition.
However, this notice can only be acted upon if a wanted person travels between member countries.
In circumstances where an individual’s whereabouts are known – and the EDP has provided Indian police with Mr Hussain’s full address – then an extradition request would be the next obvious legal step.
“It is not necessary to issue a Red Notice before seeking extradition,” said Ms Nakhwal. “It is open to the authorities to make a direct request for extradition, particularly when the whereabouts of an individual are known.
“There are treaty arrangements and procedures in place between the UK and India to allow steps to be taken to seek extradition for an individual, in order that they may be returned to face criminal charges in the requesting country.”