EU pursues trials in absentia for Britons accused of a crime abroad

Criminal solicitors are warning that British citizens could be tried in their absence for anything from motoring to criminal offences if the EU proceeds with its current plans for streamlining legal procedures. The proposals outline how a citizen could be automatic extradited of citizens at the request of another EU country. Individuals will still have the right to a retrial or appeal but, according to the organisation Fair Trials International: ?Retrials can raise serious issues such as the disappearance of evidence, difficulty in locating witnesses, and difficulty in witnesses accurately recalling facts due to elapse of time.? The plans have provoked furore from lawyers with the European Criminal Bar Association saying the proposals are ?a violation of the fundamental procedural rights of the accused.?

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