'£250,000 bill' to extradite Dewani
Extraditing cleared honeymoon murder suspect Shrien Dewani to face trial in South Africa cost the British taxpayer around £250,000, according to reports.
A Freedom of Information (FOI) request by the Daily Mirror suggested the Crown Prosecution Service spent a total of £136,520 on QCs and junior counsel to argue the case in court, while a further £23,464 was spent on psychiatric assessments of the Bristol-based businessman.
Mr Dewani, 34, fought a long UK court battle against extradition before being cleared of murdering his wife Anni when the Swedish-raised engineer was shot dead as the couple toured a rough suburb of Cape Town during their honeymoon in South Africa in 2010.
Three men already serving jail terms for their role in the killing claimed Mr Dewani arranged a hijacking-gone wrong in which he would survive and his wife would be killed, but a judge in South Africa ruled their evidence was flawed and the case was thrown out before he could give evidence.
The Mirror also said FOI figures showed CPS solicitors spent 496 hours on the case, adding a further £34,000 to the public's bill, while police, transport and medical costs made the total around £250,000.
South Africa is a category two country under the Extradition Act 2003 and Home Office guidance states the UK his obliged to act on extradition requests by sending them to the courts if they are 'valid', while it is understood the Home Secretary was not party to any of Mr Dewani's extradition appeals, which were against the decision of a district judge.