One of Scotland’s leading defence lawyers has been called in to help fight possible extradition proceedings against an evangelical preacher accused of running a child smuggling ring.
Donald Findlay, QC and former Rangers vice-chairman, has been consulted by Gilbert Deya, 52, a self-styled archbishop who is wanted in Kenya under suspicion of being behind the so-called “miracle babies” scandal.
In August, officers recovered nine babies at his Nairobi home and 11 others from the residence of one of his followers. DNA tests revealed that only one of the children matched the genetic profile of Mary Deya, the preacher’s wife.
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Mr Deya is now living in Glasgow where he is planning to fight extradition, but five of his followers in Kenya, including his wife, have been charged with child abduction.
British detectives are in Kenya to investigate his fi-nances and plan to trace funds transferred from Gilbert Deya Ministries in Britain to Kenya. They will stay in Nairobi until the end of the week and also plan to interview Kenyan journalists who claim to have received death threats from members of the Deya family.
The group claims to be the fastest-growing ministry in the world, with more than 34,000 members in the UK alone.
Mr Findlay said yesterday: “If there was any attempt to extradite him from this country, I might be instructed on that.
“There are issues relating to his asylum in the UK which I cannot discuss. It is a complicated situation.”
Mr Deya’s defence is expected to be that he will face religious and political persecution in his native land and, consequently, would not receive a fair trial. A claim for political asylum in Scotland currently is under consideration.
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