Brexit: Law enforcement official warns 'criminals abroad could fall through cracks'

10 December 2020, 13:47

By Sam Sholli

This is the moment a caller who works in law enforcement told James O'Brien of his concern over the impact Brexit could have on bringing criminals back to the UK to face justice.

Andrew in Fulham told James of his concern after Boris Johnson's last-ditch Brexit trade deal dinner talks in Brussels ended with an announcement that a "firm decision" will be reached by Sunday but that "very large gaps remain".

The PM left the dinner, at which fish featured heavily on the menu, with European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen after around three hours.

Andrew explained: "Currently my job is to deal with people who have left the country and to bring them back to the UK to face justice.

"The vast majority of my work is done within the European Union because the vast majority of people disappear into the European Union.

"Now, within the European Union, we have what's called the European Arrest Warrant, which is actually very straightforward and very easy to apply for.

"However, as of January 1st, it may no longer exist. And this is a concern for us because there are some very dangerous criminals that we have abroad that may end up falling through the cracks because we are unable to work out exactly how to bring them over."

As it stands the UK is set to withdraw from the European Arrest Warrant (EAW) after the end of the Brexit transition period – currently scheduled for the end of 2020.

The EAW is designed to make it easier for EU nations to transfer people to either face prosecution or serve a prison sentence in another EU member state.