[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Thursday, 17 November 2005, 10:51 GMT
Algerian to be extradited from UK
Paris Metro bombing
Eight people died in the 1995 attack on Saint Michel Metro station
An Algerian man, wanted in connection with a bombing on the Paris Metro in 1995, has lost a legal attempt to block extradition to France.

Two High Court judges rejected Rachid Ramda's claim that moves to deport him were legally flawed.

The 35-year-old is the UK's longest serving extradition prisoner.

Mr Ramda is accused of helping to finance the Metro bombing, which killed eight people, and of organising and financing several other bombings.

The Algerian has fought off deportation for 10 years. The legal battle has caused anger in France.

'Bombing campaign'

Mr Ramda faces 23 charges of financing and organising a bombing campaign in France between August and November 1995.

On a separate extradition request, he is accused of being a conspirator in the bombing of the Saint Michel Metro station on 25 July 1995, in which eight people were killed and 87 injured.

He is also alleged to be a financier of Algeria's outlawed Armed Islamic Group (GIA).

The GIA, which fights the government in Algeria, is thought to be responsible for the 1995 bombing campaign.

Belmarsh

In April, Home Secretary Charles Clarke made a fresh extradition order on the basis that Mr Ramda, who is being held at London's Belmarsh prison, would receive a fair trial.

That was challenged by Mr Ramda's QC Edward Fitzgerald, who told the High Court the decision was "legally flawed".

The High Court hearing in October, which led to Thursday's ruling by Lord Justice Keene and Mr Justice Poole, was told there was "a real risk of a flagrant denial of justice" in deporting Mr Ramda.

Upholding the home secretary's decision that extradition should go ahead, Lord Justice Keene said: "This court is not persuaded that the secretary of state failed in his decision of April 5, 2005 to exercise properly his powers to order the claimant's return to France."

Mr Ramda's lawyers are now considering taking the case to the House of Lords.

Past hearing

In 2002, two High Court judges quashed an extradition order, signed by the then Home Secretary David Blunkett, and ordered the case be reconsidered.

The judges had expressed concern that evidence against Mr Ramda came from co-defendant Boualem Bensaid, said by his lawyers to have been tortured during interrogation while in French custody.

Altogether, there have been nine separate legal proceedings to extradite Mr Ramda.

Supporters of a campaign to block the Algerian's extradition say he could eventually deported from France to Algeria where, they claim, he could face execution.


SEE ALSO:


RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific