The Malta Independent 26 May 2019, Sunday

Briton, 55, to be extradited to UK to face charges of defrauding partner, 82

Wednesday, 27 March 2019, 10:56 Last update: about 3 months ago

A 55-year-old British man is to be extradited to the UK to face charges of defrauding his 82-year old partner, with whom he had since moved to Gozo.

Mark Anthony Saunders had been arrested and brought before a court on March 16 after the police, following an alert on the Schengen Information System posted on March 1, traced him to Gozo.

The alert was the result of a European Arrest Warrant issued by a district judge in Birmingham last November, where Saunders is wanted to face fraud charges.

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Saunders had previously been employed in the UK as a carer with an elderly British couple and had entered into a relationship with the woman after the death of her husband. The man is alleged to have then acquired some properties, half of which had been paid for by the widow.

The couple relocated to Gozo in 2016 and have been living there ever since.

During his arraignment, Saunders’ lawyer had told the court that the extradition request followed a “malicious” case filed by the children of his client’s partner.

But on Tuesday magistrate Donatella Frendo Dimech upheld the request and committed him to custody pending his return.  

The court said that the offence for which the man was wanted back in the UK was an extraditable one in terms of law and stated that the man’s return was to be subject to the law of speciality, which, in simple terms, meant that the man could only be tried in connection with those offences mentioned in the EAW.

 Inspector Mark Galea prosecuted.

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