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Mr Darragh Coffey's picture


Education CV


PhD Candidate, Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge (2014-ongoing).

BPTC, BPP University (2018) (Part-time).

LLM (first class honours), University College Dublin (2013).

Dip. Leadership, Management and Defence Studies, Irish Defence Forces Military College (2010).

BCL (first class honours), University College Dublin (2008).



National University of Ireland, Travelling Studentship in Humanities and Social Sciences (2014-2018).

University of Cambridge, Law Faculty Bursary (2014-2017). 

The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple, Francis and Buriss Gahan Scholarship (2016).

The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple, Exhibition Award (2016).

The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple, Duke of Edinburgh Entrance Award (2016).

BPP University, BPTC Excellence Award (2016).


Professional Experience

Army Officer, Irish Defence Forces (2010-2014).

Officer Cadet, Irish Defence Forces (2008-2010).



Fields of research

Human Rights.

European Convention on Human Rights.

Counterterrorism Law and Policy.

Deportations with Assurances.



‘Absolute Protection and Expulsion from ECHR Contracting States: Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights, Non-Refoulement and Diplomatic Assurances.’


Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) states that ‘No one shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.'    The European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) has held this provision to contain an absolute prohibition on ill treatment that reaches a certain threshold. The ECtHR has also found that Article 3 can engage the responsibility of a contracting state where that state deports or otherwise transfers an individual from its territory to the territory of another state.  This will be the case if substantial grounds can be shown for believing that the individual, if transferred faces a real risk of torture or inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment in the receiving State. This non-refoulement obligation under Article 3 has restrained contracting states from deporting non-nationals who are thought to pose a threat to the national security of those states but who for varying reasons cannot be convicted of a criminal offence. Such situations have led some contracting states to negotiate diplomatic assurances with third states to which they wish to deport individuals but are restrained from doing so by Article 3. In Othman v UK the ECtHR accepted that, under certain conditions such programmes of ‘deportation with assurances’ could exempt contracting States from liability for breaches. It remains unclear whether the protection that these diplomatic assurances provide is absolute. This development raises questions over whether the protections contained in Article 3 also remain absolute. My research seeks to address these issues.



Dr. Stephanie Palmer (Girton College).

Representative Publications

Coffey, D ‘Standards of Scrutiny in Judicial Review of Deportation Decisions Involving Article 3, ECHR –X.X. v Minister for Justice and Equality’ (2017) 57 The Irish Jurist 144.

Start Date

Oct 2014

End date

Sep 2017