Press Statement from Michael Misick in Response to the AG Statement
Published in TCI POST on 01st February
I have read with amazement the comments of the Attorney General Huw Sheppard as to why I cannot return home voluntarily.
Firstly, I nor my legal representatives have ever given any previous assurance of my return nor was I ever ask to show up at any police station at any given time to answer any questions.
Sometime during 2011 my legal representatives received a letter from Helen Garlick saying that she would be inviting me to return for questions. My lawyer responded by asking for full disclosure and subjects of the questions so that I could be prepared to answer them. My lawyer never received full disclosure or the subject matter of the questions.
The next time I heard anything from SIPT or Helen Garlick was in February 2012 when they issued an Interpol Red Alert for my arrest. By that time, because of my belief that I could not get a fair trial and that me and my colleagues are being prosecuted for our political beliefs I had already applied for political asylum in Brazil. Once the Red Alert was issued, I was stuck in Brazil and could not travel home freely. There was no window of opportunity given to me to voluntarily show up.
I am a political prisoner having been arrested illegally at the request of the Attorney General Huw Shepheard and the British Government and documents they filed in the Brazilian Supreme Court requesting my detention and extradition to the Turks and Caicos Islands. For that reason, the only way that I can be released from prison is if the AG and the British Government withdraw the prison order and agree to my voluntary return. My stay in jail is not up to the Brazilian authorities as the AG asserted but it is up to the TCI Attorney General Huw Shepheard, Special Prosecutor Helen Garlick and the British Government.
In spite of still holding the belief that I cannot get a fair trial, I and my lawyers have offered for me to voluntarily return home in exchange for the AG and the British Government withdrawing my prison order. I was arrested on December 7th 2012. Today is Janurary 27th 2013. If the AG and others were truly interested in me coming home to face justice why for almost 60 days they had not made the official request for my extradition or accepted my offer to voluntarily return home?
It is obvious that the delay is about revenge and my continued political prosecution, they want to punish me by keeping me locked down in a maximum security prison in Brazil for as long as they can. Reality is that I have applied for political asylum in Brazil and there is a Red Alert out for me so how am I a flight risk? Why would I abandon my asylum application and leave Brazil? In fact I cannot do anything without the AG and Helen Garlick agreement to lift the Red Alert.
By these facts I again call on the AG and Helen Garlick, if they are truly interested in fairness and justice, to allow me to come home voluntarily so that I can answer questions and begin to prepare my defense since they have already decided that I will be charged even before asking me the first question.
It makes no sense to waste more of the TCI tax payers time and money on a long and drawn-out extradition process. The AG knows that extradition is a process and that the process must be followed wether I consent to be extradited or not. I have publicly declared my willingness to come home voluntarily, I am interested in justice. I am interested in coming home to clear my name.
The Ag and others can facilitate my speedy return so I can face their justice or they can continue to make excuses and continue their prosecution of me and punishing me without a trial by leaving me in jail in Brazil because they are upset that I did not return home a year ago. This is revenge, not justice. The choice is theirs not the Brazilian authorities.
I could be home to face whatever charges they choose to place on me in 24 to 48 hours of the AG and the British Government agreeing to my voluntary return.
There is recent president for this in England where at least one high profile prisoner did agree to voluntarily return there to face charges after being away for many years. My situation is no different from theirs.
It is highly unusual for a person that is a country’s most wanted to want to voluntarily return and the authorities of that country refusing to accept him or to expedite his return.
Something is wrong with this picture. It is up to you Mr. Attorney General.
Former Premiere of the Turks and Caicos Islands
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil