An Australian revisionist historian won the first round of a legal battle to avoid extradition to Germany.
Dr. Fredrick Toben, who is wanted on charges of Holocaust denial, on Oct. 31 was granted a $162,000 bail by a British judge. Toben must report to police daily, give no press interviews and have no access to the Internet.
City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court District Judge Daphne Wickham ruled that the European Union warrant under which Toben was detained since his arrest Oct. 1 at London’s Heathrow Airport did not contain enough details of the alleged offenses.
“I find that the particulars are vague and imprecise," the judge told the court. "I find the warrant invalid and therefore discharge the defendant.”
But lawyers representing German prosecutors said they would appeal to Britain’s High Court.
Toben, founder of the notorious Adelaide Institute in Australia, was delighted by the decision, along with his few supporters, including Holocaust denier David Irving.
“This shows that we defeated Germany again," the Associated Press reported Irving as saying. "We’ve defeated Europe in fact.”
Toben, 64, was imprisoned in Germany in 1999 for similar offenses.
In Australia, he is awaiting the verdict of a contempt-of-court case brought by the Jewish community over his alleged failure to follow a 2002 Federal Court order to remove Holocaust denial material from the Adelaide Institute Web site. Its home page this week directs all correspondence with Toben to "Her Majesty’s Prison, Wandsworth, London."
Holocaust denial is a crime in Germany but not in Britain, where Toben was arrested, or in Australia.