The Luxembourg-based Court of Justice of the EU ruled on 16 November 2010 in case C-261/09 Generalstaatsanwaltschaft Stuttgart / Gaetano Mantello.
In its ruling, the court said that a national court of an EU Member State which issues a European arrest warrant may declare that an earlier judgment given under its legal system does not cover the same acts as those referred to in the arrest warrant. As a general rule, the judicial authority which arrests the accused may not then refuse to surrender him.
In 2005 Gaetano Mantello was convicted by the Tribunale di Catania (Catania District Court, Italy) of unlawful possession of cocaine intended for onward sale. He subsequently served a prison sentence of 10 months and 20 days. In 2008, that court issued a European arrest warrant, alleging that between 2004 and 2005 Mantello had participated in organised drug trafficking in a number of Italian towns and in Germany.
Having become aware, towards the end of 2008, of the arrest warrant on the Schengen Information System (SIS), the German authorities had Mr Mantello arrested. The Tribunale di Catania – in its capacity as the judicial authority which issued the arrest warrant – informed the Oberlandesgericht (Higher Regional Court) Stuttgart that the judgment delivered in 2005 was not a bar to executing the warrant.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.