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Cannyma

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Corroboration in Scottish law with Lord McCluskey [idea][comp][thumb]
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Better a guilty man goes free than an innocent man goes to prison...[sneaky]
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SCOTLAND 2

SCOTTISH JUSTICE SYSTEM NOW PROVEN TO BE AN UTTER DISGRACE
glasgow copsMany of our groups lives have been irreparably damaged by the thugs running Scotland's legal system and who have been getting away with 'MURDER' for years. MASONIC JUDGES,LAWYERS AND COPS BEHIND THE HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES AND TYRANNY!!!!!!! But now a licence for dodgy lawyers to screw the legal aid system even more. 

‘Panic‘ as thousands of criminals may be freed after being quizzed without lawyer 

Thousands of criminals could be freed from jail because they were interviewed by police without a lawyer, it was claimed last night, as ministers and prosecutors braced themselves for a devastating defeat over human rights. Legal sources warned a looming UK Supreme Court ruling on suspects’ rights could tip the country’s justice system into “meltdown”, send legal aid bills soaring and require emergency legislation after the Crown Office activated contingency measures to minimise the impact of losing a test case. Labour last night urged Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill to make a statement at Holyrood on the impact of the case. Since 1984, suspects in England and Wales have been granted immediate access to a solicitor while being interviewed by police. But under Scots law, a person suspected of an imprisonable offence can be questioned without a lawyer for up to six hours. 

A Supreme Court decision, due in October, on an appeal brought by Peter Cadder – who was convicted at Glasgow Sheriff Court of two assaults and breach of the peace on interview evidence – will determine if the Scottish system breaches the right to a fair trial. If the Court rules that it does, it opens the door to thousands of appeals against past convictions. It was revealed yesterday in our sister title The Herald that Elish Angiolini, the Lord Advocate, who argued against a change at the Supreme Court, has told police chiefs to allow suspects immediate access to lawyers ahead of the Court’s ruling in October. The contingency measure was seen as a tacit admission by the head of the Crown Office that she is likely to lose the Cadder case. One senior legal source claimed the Crown Office was in a “panic” over the implications. It is understood civil servants are now preparing for possible emergency legislation at Holyrood and Westminster. 

If the Supreme Court goes against the Lord Advocate, the critical factor will be whether its ruling is retrospective, leading to old cases being reopened, or prospective, meaning it would only apply to future cases. A prospective judgment is unusual in a human rights case. Cadder’s appeal drew on a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights in 2008, which said Turkish anti-terrorist police illegally denied a young protestor, Yusuf Salduz, legal assistance. The implication was that access to a lawyer was a fundamental right. Supreme Court insiders said Angiolini was counting on a recent appeal court ruling by seven Scottish judges that the Salduz case did not apply to Scotland. 

However, the Supreme Court judges dismissed the Scottish example and asked Angiolini about possible emergency legislation for Scotland. Human rights lawyer John Scott said: “The Crown approached Cadder without a plan B. This is not a new issue. Scotland has sleepwalked into this.” The Supreme Court could issue a retrospective decision applying to all cases dating back to the start of devolution in 1999. Another option would be to backdate the change to the Salduz ruling in 2008. 

Paul McBride QC said: “A decision against the Crown, especially if it is retrospective, could put hundreds if not thousands of convictions at risk, including some of the most serious cases.” But human rights solicitor Tony Kelly, who helped prisoners win compensation for slopping out, dismissed predictions of a meltdown, as only a fraction of appeals would succeed: “There’s a potential for disruption, but there are also a lot of procedural hurdles.” Labour’s justice spokesman Richard Baker said: “It’s essential that Kenny MacAskill ensures that robust contingency plans are in place. He needs to tell Parliament about those plans as a matter of urgency.” 

Conservative MSP John Lamont said if the court ruling was retrospective, Tory MSPs would help pass any emergency legislation needed. Martha Rafferty, a criminal defence lawyer with Anthony Mahon in Glasgow, said: “If the decision goes against the Crown it’s going to have ramifications for the whole criminal justice system. It will completely change the nature of inquiries made by the police.” Crown sources denied the prosecution service was in a panic or ill-prepared. 

A government spokesperson said ministers, the Crown Office, legal aid board and police had been working on contingency plans for a year. Austin Lafferty, solicitor and member of the Council of the Law Society of Scotland, said: “On one analysis it should be a fundamental right of any arrested person to have legal advice. “The problems are in two areas. Firstly, for new cases we need to know if there is going to be legal aid provision that properly funds the additional lawyer attend ance at police stations; secondly, is the right to solicitor attendance going to be retrospective? “Even if there are not wholesale acquittals … enough convicted persons considering and starting proceedings will create a very expensive logjam in the system.” 


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