Hence the American prosecution practices are what the law calls ‘a derogation from honest service’. The US prosecution service, in heedless pursuit of convictions, does what it wants and prosecutes whoever it wishes for as long as it likes. Thus, over 90 per cent of prosecutions are successful, a higher proportion than in either Putin’s Russia or Communist China. America, as Black puts it, has become a ‘prosecut-ocracy’.
That being so, it has also necessarily become what he calls a ‘carceral state’, putting behind bars, often for many years, a wholly unacceptable proportion of its own citizens: 750,000 are sent to prison every year, and the number is rising. Over 47 million Americans now have a criminal record. The gap between the United States and other civilised countries has widened enormously in recent years in this respect. The US has five times the population of the United Kingdom but 40 times the number in prison. This fact alone ought to invalidate the monstrously inequable extradition treaty between Britain and the States. It is quite obvious that a person we extradite to America cannot expect the level of justice we take for granted here.