With a decision delivered on May 2, 2018, the French Court of Cassation affirmed that the United Kingdom triggering Article 50 TUE does not constitute valid reason to decline surrender of individuals sought by means of a European Arrest Warrant by that Country.
The Court of Cassation upheld the decision of the Court of Appeal, which, on March 28, 2018, discarded the exceptions raised by the requested person with regard to Brexit. Interestingly, the highest Court in France did not wait for the decision of the Court of Justice of the European Union on an analogous question referred to it by the Irish High Court.
It, rather, labelled the defence argument concerning the uncertainties of the law in force after the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the EU as merely “conjectural”.
In an exercise of judicial self-restraint, the justices of the Palais de Justice stated that the outcome of the withdrawal of the UK from the EU depends upon ongoing negotiations and vowed to be solely bound by “the law as it is”. It followed that, up until Brexit becomes effective, French courts will continue to abide by the Council Framework Decision of 13 June 2002 on the European arrest warrant in their relationship with Great Britain.