No extradition for UK firefighter

City of Westminster Magistrates court in the UK has renewed the conditional bail of a British firefighter who was re-arrested earlier this year over football related violence in Albufeira during the Euro 2004 championship.

Garry Mann, 51, who has always maintained his innocence, was convicted in June 2004, along with 10 other fans, of public order offences and resisting arrest and jailed for two years.

However, he was deported to the UK immediately and released  (see the Algarve Resident edition, August 6, 2004 and April 3, 2009).

In March, Garry Mann was re-arrested at his home in Kent by Metropolitan police under a European arrest warrant but released the same day on bail pending an appeal.

During the hearing last month, Gerry Mann’s counsel Anthony Metzer told the court that it was understood by his client and British football intelligence officers that he would not have to serve the sentence in either country as long as he left Portugal for one year.

He also said that the decision to extradite Garry Mann had been made in retrospect and for him to serve a jail term after an “unfair” trial would be “an abuse of executive power”.

It is not known what prompted the Portuguese authorities to ask for Garry Mann, an animal rescue expert with the Kent Fire and Rescue Service, to be re-arrested.