US attorney general Eric Holder has denied feeling "completely screwed" by Theresa May after she blocked the extradition of computer hacker Gary McKinnon last month.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4's Today programme, Holder said his relationship with the home secretary "is and remains strong" despite her decision to halt McKinnon's extradition in October.

Asked whether he felt "completely screwed" by the decision he said: "No, not at all.

"We were certainly disappointed by the decision, given the fact that prior home secretaries and judges here in the UK had made the determination that he could be extradited.

gary mckinnon

Gary McKinnon has Asperger's syndrome


"But the relationship we have with the UK is a special one and the relationship I have with Theresa May is indeed a good one."

McKinnon, who has Asperger's syndrome, had been accused by US prosecutors of "the biggest military computer hack of all time", but he claimed he was simply looking for evidence of UFOs.

Holder also said the extradition treaty between Britain and America, which many campaigners describe as unbalanced, was "fair."

theresa may

Theresa May blocked the extradition of Gary McKinnon last month on health grounds


"If you look at the relationship in its totality and in a fact-based way, I think you can see the extradition relationship is indeed a balanced one, the appropriate standards are used by both nations, and that we work together in extradition as we do in other areas to foster our common needs," he said.

"We work together with our British counterparts in trying to determine where cases can best be tried. If one also looks at these statistics, you’ll see that there have been 11 times when the UK has refused to send somebody to the United States, one time when the United States has refused to send someone to the UK.

eric holder

Eric Holder said that the US-UK treaty was 'fair'


"Again, you can focus too much on particular cases and draw too much from some statistical information when, I want to assure the population in this great nation that the relationship is indeed a balance and its one we are constantly working on to make better.

The UK's extradition laws are set to be changed to include a ‘forum bar’, which would mean a court hearing has to be held to decide whether a person should stand trial in the UK or abroad.

Conservative MP Dominic Raab, who sits on the committee, told The Huffington Post UK last month the forum bar would "help to depoliticise these cases and remove a thorn in the side of the special relationship.”