Page last updated at 14:13 GMT, Wednesday, 24 June 2009 15:13 UK

Mother loses extradition appeal

Corinna Reid
Corinna Reid could be charged with the manslaughter of her son

An Edinburgh mother who is wanted in Spain over the drug-linked death of her toddler son has lost a final legal challenge against her extradition.

However, Corinna Reid, 33, may escape prosecution because of legal negotiations by her partner, Robert Cormack, 38, who is in a Tenerife jail.

Ms Reid could end up facing a manslaughter charge.

The move follows the death of her 16-month-old son, Aiden Cormack, during a holiday in Tenerife in January in 2007.

Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh judges refused Ms Reid's challenge against extradition to Spain.

It would be thoroughly undesirable if she was to be taken to Spain by virtue of the warrant only to be sent back home after a relatively short time with proceedings against her having been discontinued
Lord Nimmo Smith
Court of Criminal Appeal

The senior judge, Lord Nimmo Smith, called for both the Scottish and Spanish authorities to adopt a responsible attitude over sending Ms Reid, who also has an infant daughter, abroad.

He said: "It would be thoroughly undesirable if she was to be taken to Spain by virtue of the warrant only to be sent back home after a relatively short time with proceedings against her having been discontinued."

It was initially suggested the child died of natural causes, but a later toxicology report said death occurred through ingestion of the drugs methadone, a heroin substitute, and diazepam.

Mr Cormack returned to Spain, where he is in prison, earlier this year to await prosecution.

Ms Reid fought moves to extradite her claiming it would breach her right and that of her baby daughter, who is still under one, to private and family life under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Her counsel, Mungo Bovey QC, argued that to send her to Spain would break the bond between mother and daughter.

Plea bargain

Mr Bovey said there were also moves taking place in Spain with Cormack's case and a meeting between his new lawyer and a prosecutor has been arranged with instructions to offer a plea to "accidental homicide".

He said that if the prosecutor agreed to it and would recommend a penalty of imprisonment for one to two years, acceptance of the plea bargain would be recommended to Mr Cormack.

Mr Bovey said if such a deal was struck it was a possibility that the investigating magistrate in the case would withdraw the arrest warrant for Ms Reid.

Ms Reid's extradition was originally ordered by Sheriff Frank Crowe following a hearing earlier this year at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

During the case the sheriff heard that Mr Cormack had been prescribed methadone and that the couple were a bit disorganised after moving rooms during their holiday and that Aiden apparently had been able to find the drug.

Ms Reid said she felt "sick, disgusted, horrified and angry" when she found out her son's death occurred after consuming drugs.

She would normally be sent to Spain within 10 days, but Lord Nimmo Smith said the steps being taken on behalf of Mr Cormack to tender a plea may have an impact on the Spanish authorities view of her case.

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