Mum’s relief as son avoids extradition

Julia O'Dwyer
Julia O'Dwyer

“It was a huge shock - but a nice shock,” said Julia O’Dwyer on the moment she discovered her son’t two-year battle against extradition was over.

But as the news broke from the court room - that Richard would not face imprisonment in the US - the O’Dwyer family were as surprised as anyone.

The campaigning mum, of Bolsover, said: “I was at work so couldn’t see the news.

“I knew the lawyers were going to court to try and adjourn the appeal date.

“The lawyers were in court and couldn’t break off to phone me but the journalists were in court so they found out first.”

For Mrs O’Dwyer the news on Wednesday, that her son would not be facing up to ten years in an American prison, was too much and she burst in to tears.

She added: “I can’t believe it really, that it’s turned out like this, so well.

“I was a huge shock but it’s fantastic news.”

Richard, a 24-year-old the university student who created a website which linked to programmes and films online for free, has reached an agreement to avoid extradition over copyright infringement allegations.

He has signed a draft “deferred prosecution” agreement which requires him to travel to the US and pay a small sum of compensation but will mean he will not face a trial or criminal record.

The deal brings an end to a case that has attracted widespread criticism around the world.

Mrs O’Dwyer said: “It’s a huge relief but I don’t know why they couldn’t have done this in the first place.

“We’ve had so much support, especially from the media. We’ve a lot of thank-yous to say.”