Judge-only terror courts mooted

#1
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4133564.stm

Judge-only courts are being considered for pre-trial hearings in terror cases, the Home Office has confirmed.
Sitting in secret, judges would look at whether there was enough evidence against suspects for cases to proceed.

On Friday, Tony Blair said the government was looking into a new court procedure allowing a pre-trial process, as he unveiled new terror measures.

Commons home affairs committee chairman John Denham has criticised ministers for putting forward "half-baked" ideas.

The Home Office said details of how terror cases would be tried were still being worked out, but confirmed a move to judge-only courts was under active consideration.
Just another 'swiiiiiisssssh' on the slippery slope.
 
#2
Next thing you know, it's going to be guilty until proven innocent...seems TCB and his cronies have no respect for anything they didn't dream up.
 
#3
You can bet your arrse that, if they had been around in 2003, Andrew Gilligan and Dr Kelly wouls have been in front of one...and we'd be none the wiser as to all that went on.
 
#4
PartTimePongo said:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4133564.stm

Judge-only courts are being considered for pre-trial hearings in terror cases, the Home Office has confirmed.
Sitting in secret, judges would look at whether there was enough evidence against suspects for cases to proceed.

On Friday, Tony Blair said the government was looking into a new court procedure allowing a pre-trial process, as he unveiled new terror measures.

Commons home affairs committee chairman John Denham has criticised ministers for putting forward "half-baked" ideas.

The Home Office said details of how terror cases would be tried were still being worked out, but confirmed a move to judge-only courts was under active consideration.
Just another 'swiiiiiisssssh' on the slippery slope.
Don't see whats wrong here. All they are doing is

"look at whether there was enough evidence against suspects for cases to proceed"
Is it not fair for judges to review the evidence and decide if there is enough to proceed with a full trial (with a jury to decide on innocence or guilt) or should we leave it to the CPS who have a endency to mess up large and complex cases through miniscule mistakes?
 
#5
Need a little bit of clarification here…

Will the judges be sitting after a suspect has been arrested and charged thus deciding if the CPS evidence is enough to go to trial on and if not will the suspect then be released but still be able to be re-arrested and re-charged with the same crime on better evidence?

Will the judge be selected to only deal with this level of crime or will they be the common or garden aged variety that seem to nod off from time to time?

Who will decide which level of crime is a terrorist related crime that should be pre-trial by this method and which is basic enough for the normal process?

Is this, as previously discussed in another thread a step towards a greater Diplock system? I recall it was also suggested for complex fraud cases a while ago.

Beebs
 
#6
blessed baby cakes said:
Need a little bit of clarification here…

Will the judges be sitting after a suspect has been arrested and charged thus deciding if the CPS evidence is enough to go to trial on and if not will the suspect then be released but still be able to be re-arrested and re-charged with the same crime on better evidence?

Will the judge be selected to only deal with this level of crime or will they be the common or garden aged variety that seem to nod off from time to time?

Who will decide which level of crime is a terrorist related crime that should be pre-trial by this method and which is basic enough for the normal process?

Is this, as previously discussed in another thread a step towards a greater Diplock system? I recall it was also suggested for complex fraud cases a while ago.

Beebs
I think in the case of complex fraud, it was proposed to allow the judge alone to make the decision on guilt (rather than allow a jury to become bamboozled by the complexities).

As far as i can see, in this context, the judge would only decide if there was enough evidence to proceed to a full jury based trial.
 
#7
Agent_Smith said:
blessed baby cakes said:
Need a little bit of clarification here…

Will the judges be sitting after a suspect has been arrested and charged thus deciding if the CPS evidence is enough to go to trial on and if not will the suspect then be released but still be able to be re-arrested and re-charged with the same crime on better evidence?

Will the judge be selected to only deal with this level of crime or will they be the common or garden aged variety that seem to nod off from time to time?

Who will decide which level of crime is a terrorist related crime that should be pre-trial by this method and which is basic enough for the normal process?

Is this, as previously discussed in another thread a step towards a greater Diplock system? I recall it was also suggested for complex fraud cases a while ago.

Beebs
I think in the case of complex fraud, it was proposed to allow the judge alone to make the decision on guilt (rather than allow a jury to become bamboozled by the complexities).

As far as i can see, in this context, the judge would only decide if there was enough evidence to proceed to a full jury based trial.
Was the Diplock System not introduced as a temporary measure to deal with 'complex' cases but ended up dealing with just about everything for a rather longer period?

I think I maybe on PTP's side on this one. Slippery slope. I'd need much more validation as to the depth of need.

Beebs
 
#8
I see what your getting at beeb.

It's all very well introducing these new policies, but unless their scope for use is defined, i guess they could be banded about for any old crime (with a minimalistic justification) that was half way near terrorism.
 
#9
Agent_Smith said:
I see what your getting at beeb.

It's all very well introducing these new policies, but unless their scope for use is defined, i guess they could be banded about for any old crime (with a minimalistic justification) that was half way near terrorism.
And we never seem to be in full possession of the facts at the moment, it all has an 'on the back of mass hysteria' feeling to it.....

Beebs
 
#10
blessed baby cakes said:
Agent_Smith said:
I see what your getting at beeb.

It's all very well introducing these new policies, but unless their scope for use is defined, i guess they could be banded about for any old crime (with a minimalistic justification) that was half way near terrorism.
And we never seem to be in full possession of the facts at the moment, it all has an 'on the back of mass hysteria' feeling to it.....

Beebs
Legislation for legislations sake?

Just remeber that those that propose these new laws are those that will benefit from them (Mr & Mrs Blair both being lawyers?)

Although on the face of it, this one does appeal to me as it would hopefully cut down on the number of unprepared cases being sent before a jury.
 
#12
Sounds like Diplock courts all over again to me.

We certainly managed to build strong concensus with the minority communities us that time, didn't we :?: :?:
:oops: :oops: :oops: :oops:
 
#13
Something about the fact that it will be held in secret worries me.
 
#15
The Home Office says any idea of moving towards a French-style inquisitorial, rather than adversarial court system, is "very long term" and not being actively considered.

1. Is it "very long term" or is it "not being actively considered?" It can't be both. They're either "considering" it or they aren't.

2. "Very long term" = right after the next subway bombing.
 
#16
"a French-style inquisitorial, rather than adversarial court system"
- oh no, don't go there! The British system isn't perfect by a long shot but the French system makes my blood run cold!
- Judges appointed to investigate cases then "dis-appointed" when their findings don't please the politicians (most used when investigating politicians/their friends/family).... can't remember name of latest case, sorry
Investigating Judges coming up with conclusions such as when a politician called Yann Piat died of "lead poisoning" due to 5 bullets in the stomach it was "suicide" (funny but she was on an anti-corruption crusade & was going to name BIG names I think).
- Investigations & court cases taking even longer than in Blighty from what I gather.
No advantage to Joe Q Public as you still need a lawyer so it's still expensive.
The only good thing about the French system is that they have specially trained judges, not doddering old fogeys who are well past their sell-by date!
Yes, well, I can see why Tony & his mates approve of that kind of system - but I hope it's so long term it dies of old age before being implemented!!
Nother step on the slippery slope I agree...
 
#17
This is an extremely unwelcome and dangerous development. It's a reincarnation of Diplock courts on a general scale.
I can just imagine it: "Yuss, yer 'onna, we think he stole this bike to support a terrorist organisation, coz we found a doner wrapper in 'is pocket." And off to the new Diplock he goes.
It'll be almost immediately misused and abused, like all the other crackpot laws they've introduced.

Protestor: Officer, you're hurting my wrist!
Old Bill: Terrorist? Did you say terrorist?
Protestor: No, I said yo......
Old Bill: Right, come with me, sunshine! (or: "Consider yourself Donald Ducked!)

It'll be internment next, because it was such a runaway success the first time around.

MsG
 

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#18
MrPVRd said:
You can bet your arrse that, if they had been around in 2003, Andrew Gilligan and Dr Kelly wouls have been in front of one...and we'd be none the wiser as to all that went on.
OK, lets take this to the other end of the scale. If that had been in perhaps Kelly would still be alive, more than likely out of jail with a fantastic book deal.

Police state I am against, but what this guy went up against was worse than that - it was 'The Establishment'. Faceless, unaccountable and the guilty guaranteed to get off regardless of any 'official enquiry'.
 
#19
How would they have dealt with this scenario?

http://www.hmcourts-service.gov.uk/legalprof/judgments/siac/outcomes/sc122002h.htm

H

1. We have used the name in which H was certified, which is also the name in which he appeared before the Commission. It is not suggested that the name Rachid which was that on the false passport he was using to enter the United Kingdom in August 1993 was ever his true name.

2. The Appellant is Algerian, having been born in Western Algeria in November 1972. Like many (indeed, the majority) of Algerians he supported the FIS. In 1991, he left Algeria in order, he said, to involve himself in “desperately needed voluntary work” in Afghanistan. He had been swayed by an impressive speaker who visited the university at which he was studying to be a teacher and who asked in particular for doctors, nurses and teachers to come to help stabilise the country which had been ravaged by the war with Russia. He went and taught Arabic in a refugee camp run by Sayef, now one of the leaders of the Northern Alliance and hardly a supporter of Al Qa’eda, which was in any event unheard of then.

http://www.hmcourts-service.gov.uk/legalprof/judgments/siac/outcomes/sc122002h.htm

In fact , read through the appeals here

http://www.hmcourts-service.gov.uk/legalprof/judgments/siac/siac.htm
 

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