Zentai and the Troubles of Extradition
journal contributionposted on 2019-10-29, 09:16 authored by Matthew Stubbs
In Minister for Home Affairs (Cth) v Zentai, the High Court held that the Treaty on Extradition between Australia and the Republic of Hungary prevented Mr Zentai’s extradition to face accusations of committing a retrospective war crimes offence. The case is, in all likelihood, the last episode in the history of Australia’s contributions to bringing to justice alleged war criminals from the Second World War. The extraordinary time and resources devoted to the ultimately abortive extradition process in Zentai raise questions about the effi ciency of the procedures under the Extradition Act 1988 (Cth). Further, given the strict textual interpretation adopted by the Court, amendment to some of Australia’s extradition treaties may be required to uphold the key purpose of extradition arrangements, which is to facilitate international cooperation in the apprehension and surrender for trial of those accused of serious criminal offences.