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posted Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Journalists: find our latest press release about Gary McKinnon’s case in ‘Related resources’ at the bottom of this page.

Gary McKinnon was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome in August 2008 and faces extradition to the United States to stand trial for allegedly hacking into US Defense computer systems. As a result of Gary’s late diagnosis, his Asperger syndrome was not taken into account in any legal proceedings prior to August 2008.

A Judicial Review of the decision to extradite Gary McKinnon is due to be heard on 9 and 10 June 2009. This latest legal battle, and perhaps last chance in Gary’s case, is approaching fast. To help stop Gary’s extradition we will present a petition to 10 Downing Street.

Please add your name to our petition and help to show the Prime Minister the huge level of support that Gary has. Signing the petition will only take a minute – add your name today, and ask your friends to do the same.


More about Gary McKinnon’s case

Gary McKinnon was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome in August 2008 and faces extradition to the United States to stand trial for allegedly hacking into US Defense computer systems. As a result of Gary’s late diagnosis, his Asperger syndrome was not taken into account in any legal proceedings prior to August 2008.

The Judicial Review, due to be heard on 9 and 10 June 2009, will represent the first opportunity to consider Gary’s Asperger syndrome in relation to his case and to examine whether extradition would contravene specific human rights.

The decision to allow Judicial Review was the result of a High Court hearing on 23 January 2009. The National Autistic Society (NAS) submitted evidence to this hearing about the nature of Asperger syndrome and the fact that people receive late diagnoses. This evidence was particularly important since the High Court acknowledged that Gary had been diagnosed with Asperger syndrome late and that it seemed that late diagnosis was not uncommon.

Janis Sharp, mother of Gary McKinnon, told the NAS:

“We have been hugely grateful and at times overwhelmed by the incredible show of support for Gary’s struggle we have received over the years.

“Since his diagnosis with Asperger syndrome last year, the NAS has backed our pleas that his extradition should be reconsidered in the light of his condition. More recently we have been heartened by support from Lord Carlile, Boris Johnson, Sting and Trudie Styler, and Terry Waite, all of whom have an interest in human rights issues and believe that Gary should not be extradited.

“We desperately hope that the Government listens to all those who have lent their support and realises what we all know: that to extradite Gary to the USA would be disproportionate, wrong and potentially life-threatening.”

The Judicial Review is vital to halting extradition given the disappointing decision by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) on 26 February 2009 not to bring charges against Gary McKinnon in the UK, despite widespread public support for this from campaigners and the autism community. In addition, MPs from across the political parties are continuing to question the decision to extradite Gary.

NAS Chief Executive Mark Lever said:

“We are very disappointed by the CPS decision not to prosecute Gary McKinnon in the UK. Over 4,000 people emailed the Attorney General about this through a campaign on the NAS website and Gary continues to have a lot of support from the autism community. We still strongly believe that the extradition, and a possible maximum security prison sentence, would be inappropriate and very damaging for anyone affected by Asperger syndrome.”


Related resources


Relevant areas/articles elsewhere on this website


Relevant documents for downloading

Source:  http://www.nas.org.uk/nas/jsp/polopoly.jsp?d=1895&a=18512



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