- Jamal Owda, 26, was one of 23 people held in raids in December
- He was arrested by National Crime Agency officers in Liverpool
- He is accused of helping 50,000 migrants enter Greece from Turkey
- If found guilty he could face up to 20 years in prison
Palestinian Jamal Owda, 26, (pictured) will argue he cannot be extradited for alleged people smuggling because being held in a Greek prison would breach his human rights
A Palestinian asylum-seeker allegedly behind a people smuggling gang accused of trafficking 100 Syrian refugees a day into Europe will argue he cannot be extradited because being held in aGreek prison would breach his human rights, a court heard today.
Palestinian Jamal Owda, 26, was one of 23 people held in raids across Europe in December over an operation authorities claim could have made up to £7 million since 2013 by preying on desperate civilians fleeing the civil war.
He was arrested on a European Arrest Warrant by National Crime Agency officers at an asylum shelter in Liverpool.
Westminster Magistrates' Court in London today heard he is applying for asylum in the UK.
Greece is seeking his extradition to stand trial over the alleged smuggling operation it says was based in the country and if found guilty he could face up to 20 years in prison.
But his lawyer said today that prison conditions in the country may breach Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which covers the right to life.
Amelia Nice told the hearing the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture had investigated Greek prisons.
She said: '[The committee's] report says things are not getting better, they are getting significantly worse, so it becomes an Article 2 case.'
She added that Owda's legal team was trying to arrange for an expert to independently inspect a Greek prison before a full hearing in the case.
She also said: 'Subsequent to extradition one of the issues is that he is likely to be sent back to Palestine.