29 December 2011

Key recommendations following fingerprint enquiry.

The Fingerprint Inquiry, Scotland

The Report of the Fingerprint Inquiry was published on 14 December 2011.

On 14 March 2008 the Scottish Government established a public inquiry into the case of former policewoman Shirley McKie which Justice Minister Kenny MacAskill said has "cast a cloud over the individuals involved and has been a source of serious concern for the criminal justice system for the past decade."

Immediately after the publication of the findings Tom Nelson, director of forensic services at the Scottish police services authority (SPSA) issued a personal apology in public over the handling of the matter to Shirley McKie and her father Iain. See Guardian report by Eamonn O'Neill 14 12 2011.

Key recommendations of the Report include:

  • Fingerprint evidence should be recognised as opinion evidence, not fact, and those involved in the criminal justice system need to assess it as such on its merits.
  • Examiners should discontinue reporting conclusions on identification or exclusion with a claim to 100% certainty or on any other basis suggesting that fingerprint evidence is infallible.
  • Features on which examiners rely should be demonstrable to a lay person with normal eyesight as observable in the mark.
  • A finding of identification should not be made if there is an unexplained difference between a mark and a print.
The full report is now available online at www.thefingerprintinquiryscotland.org.uk/inquiry/3127.html

15 December 2011

INUK campaign for the reform of the CCRC

  We have to at least have a review of the only way back to Court of Appeal which is the CCRC…in the past the PCA was replaced by the IPCC because it was seen to be failing…critics would even say now that the IPCC needs examining!! Any body like these has to be subject to scrutiny.  The CCRC are not only second guessing how the C of A  will view a case, but how the C of A viewed it previously….this should not be their priority, the whole case needs to be considered even if fresh evidence has been identified…they must look at the full picture, everything is relevant.


10 December 2011

Do judicial procedures obstruct miscarriages of justice from being overturned?


This campaign attempts to outline justifications for a review of current judicial procedures regarding the criminal justice system and purported miscarriages of justice. It attempts to illustrate how a department and its procedures impact upon the actions of another. One of the key issues addressed is that of the rules of disclosure. In specific instances where it is purported there has been a miscarriage of justice this process has not been addressed adequately, thus causing the search for the truth in an adversarial system such as ours to obscure the real issue of innocence, in addition to other issues such as police misconduct. This campaign does not request the Home Affairs Select Committee to address the guilt or innocence of a particular person or to intervene in the judicial process, but to review the procedures undertaken by specific government departments:

Don't Let it Be You!, our campaign for December 2011

Jeremy Bamber, Susan May and Eddie Gilfoyle have written attached document which is being submitted to the Home Affairs Select Committee. It is about how the judicial system as a whole obstructs those who are wrongly convicted from obtaining documents whether they are under Public Interest Immunity or simply denied to the Defence. It also calls upon the Committee to review the processes of the Ministry of Justice departments including the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), Police and Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) because these bodies simply do not operate effectively owing to underfunding, organizational restrictions, political agenda, incompetence and in some cases corruption.

If after reading 'Do judicial procedures obstruct miscarriages of justice from being overturned?', you are minded to support the campaign, simply print it off, and send it with a brief covering letter stating that you support the submission to:

Rt Hon Keith Vaz, Committee Chair
Home Affairs Committee
House of Commons
7 Millbank
London SW1P 3JA
Telephone 020 7219 3276
Fax 020 7219 2744

02 December 2011

Cardiff Three

Satish Saker, guardian.co.uk, Thursday 1 December 2011

Why does this not surprise me??  It is diabolical that in any proven miscarriage of justice those who conspired to fit the evidence around the wrong person(s) are never brought to task. To be wrongly imprisoned is horrendous and it is not about 'revenge' but wholly about justice.  How is it that here in this case a 'fair trial' could not be held because of 'missing' and 'destroyed' evidence, yet most miscarriage of justice evidence is 'lost', 'destroyed', manipulated, corruptly re-written.....but the conviction remains despite this??  It is surely far too convenient to comprehend that the necessary evidence needed to run this trial was inadvertently destroyed!!  Certainly I see parallels with my case and I am sure so do others who have been fitted up by corrupt police.