Monday, 24 June 2013

Deputy Mike Higgins' Evidence.

The House of Commons Select Committee that reviews the Justice Ministry which has responsibility for good governance in the Crown Dependencies are on the island.

The Select Committee, in the coming days, will be meeting with Chief Minister, Senator Ian Gorst, the unelected Lieutenant Governor Sir John McColl, Law Officers and unelected Bailiff Sir Michael Birt. Then they will be meeting with States Members. The Select Committee WILL NOT be meeting with the public.

Jersey politician, Deputy Mike Higgins, among others, has submitted a written submission (below) which makes for extremely alarming reading, yet an oh so familiar tale of alleged corruption in Jersey's government, Civil Service, Judiciary and elsewhere.

Deputy Higgins has told us; "I have been contacted by more than 15 people, to include, former Police Officers, family members of serving Officers and members of the public. The number of cases is growing on a daily basis." The Deputy went on to say; "I am swamped with allegations/evidence of the breakdown in the rule of law and am working round the clock in an attempt to address them all."

Deputy Higgins said "I have attempted to raise these matters in the States (Island's parliament) and the Home affairs Minister, Senator Ian Le Marquand, refuses to answer, or evades, questions regarding allegations of perversion of the course of justice by the Chief Officer and Deputy Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police and whether he will call in an external Police Force to investigate these allegations. Indeed the Minister has gone one step further and stated he doesn't believe that questions such as these should be asked in the States and would like to see Standing Orders (rules) changed to prevent them being asked in future."



Written evidence from Michael Higgins Issues relating to Good Government.

My name is Michael Higgins. I am a Deputy representing St Helier Districts 3 and 4 in the States of Jersey, the Island’s Parliament. I was first elected to the States in 2008 and subsequently in 2011. We all currently serve a three year term of office.

By way of background I was a Commissioned Officer in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve (Training Branch) for twelve years. A lecturer in Economics, Law and Banking at Highlands College in Jersey for 18 years and a member of the Legal and Policy Team at the Jersey Financial Services Commission (the Island’s Financial Regulator) for 12 years before entering politics.

The purpose of my submission is to draw to the Committee’s attention my serious and grave concerns, which I know are shared by a number of my colleagues and many Islanders, about various aspects of the governance of Jersey and in particular the Criminal Justice and Legal Systems, the lack of separation of powers between the Legislature, Judiciary and Executive and the recent Referendum on the Structure of Government.

As each one of these topics would take volumes let alone 3,000 words to elaborate on the purpose of my submission is to request that the Committee be prepared to accept highly detailed evidence based written submissions into these areas in the near future (dossiers are currently being compiled) and to hear oral evidence either in Jersey or in the United Kingdom, so that the Committee can judge the validity or otherwise of our concerns.

To give you an appreciation of some of my personal concerns I will list some of those relating to the to the States of Jersey Police which are primarily based on evidence I have received from numerous sources:

1. The failure of the States of Jersey Police and the Jersey Financial Services Commission to properly investigate allegations of fraud by a financial institution;

2. The failure of the States of Jersey Police to properly investigate allegations of perjury by Civil Servants in a Court of Law, especially when it was alleged some of their former colleagues were involved;

3. The failure of the States of Jersey Police to properly investigate or even accept complaints of perversion of the course of justice and other unlawful activities by serving officers;

4. The failure of the Data Protection Commissioner and her staff to properly assist members of the public who put in subject access complaints to the States of Jersey Police in order to pursue cases against the Police when they are blatantly obstructed by the police;

5. Possible abuses of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers (Jersey) Law, which is modelled on the UK legislation by the States of Jersey Police;

6. The failure of the Home Affairs Minister to take any action, or if he has done so, any effective action in cases where he has been advised by former police officers that serving police officers have been perverting the course of justice;

7. The loss of evidence from police custody relating to child abuse (Haut de la Garenne) and which is highly relevant to the States Compensation Scheme for victims of abuse;

8. The collusion of civil servants and politicians to remove a Minister from Office which was revealed by a former Chief of Police;

9. The swift and in my view illegal removal of the same former Chief of Police;

10. The working of the legal aid system which means that ordinary citizens have almost no chance of getting any justice in the legal system.

Whilst the Committee may have difficulty in believing that such things are going on in a well regulated financial centre with its own democratically elected government and parliament all I ask is that the Committee be prepared to accept the written submissions when they are completed and hear oral evidence from those with the concerns rather than the normal Executive members and Civil Servants the UK authorities normally hear from and have contact with.

I am turning to the Committee for assistance because it is exceptionally difficult to successfully address these issues in Jersey and external assistance is needed to end the abuses that are occurring in this Island. Unfortunately what I am describing is nothing new but most people are afraid to raise their heads above the parapet as they know they will experience a whole range of subtle and not so subtle pressure to keep quiet or go away.

May 2013(END)

Despite that last paragraph, Deputy Higgins has told us that a growing number of those submitting evidence to him ARE now willing to "put their heads above the parapet" and are prepared, if needs be, to appear at any tribunal/hearing/court and swear their evidence under oath. The Deputy has also said "if this is what they can do to former policemen and members of Jersey's parliament then what are they doing to the more vulnerable members of the public?"

Although the Deputy has said he is swamped with evidence of wrongdoing he would still like to hear from anyone else who has been wronged, or failed by, the States of Jersey Police, the Criminal and Civil Justice System or the Data Protection Office and has evidence to support their claims.

Deputy Higgins can be contacted by e-mail at michael.higgins@jerseymail.co.uk

The Justice Select Committee's remit, and further submissions can be read HERE.

50 comments:

  1. May the force be with him. He'll need it.

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  2. Deputy Higgins' submission coupled with THIS makes one wonder how long the UK can keep turning a blind eye and failing in its obligation to ensure good governance and the rule of law in the crown dependencies, or at least in Jersey.

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  3. I would like to make a complaint. HG

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    1. HG.

      You have, in my opinion, the best man fighting your corner in Bob Hill. The way you were treated by Jersey's "justice" system/police looks to be exactly what Deputy Higgins, and Deputy Trevor Pitman are talking about. Perhaps between yourself and Bob you could compile a dossier concerning your arrest and subsequent court case and submit it to Deputy Higgins?

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  4. Thanks Voice, I had already suffered a lot of wrong at the hands of the police before that. Especially the police 'punishment' of me for reporting EY, when, as soon as they let him off, they captured me brutally, flung me about and locked me in a cell, releasing me in the early hours of the next morning in shock that I never really recovered from, and it went on in that vein until they arrested me in 2010 and knocked me about and jeered at me and lied to the court about their treatment of me.
    I can't work on any dossier at the moment as I am completely worn out and can't do anything for the moment. This matter will be the death of me, literally.
    I am also increasingly concerned that despite the conflict of interests, Dame Steele and the police are being allowed to proceed with some investigation, and that should not be being allowed.
    HG

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  5. Dear HG, you have through your pain, been a brave light for us here in Jersey. You don't have to go to battle alone anymore, good people like Bob, like Mike and many others who were and still angry over the way you were treated. x it's this that has paved the way to a chance Jersey will move forward without fear, without fear. x others will follow, and at long last Jersey can be a place that has a fair legal and political system, where a Bailiff unelected can't sit on an elected seat, nor a Dean! and where a Judge can't sit on a case that his brother was involved in, Yes, Sir Philip you know who you are! It's a start, a start....

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    1. Thank you anonymous. I have just got tired as all this goes on, it has worn me down. I do hope things get better for Jersey.
      The church and government in Jersey are living in the dark ages, I do hope it changes, in a wealthy western society it is astounding what they are getting away with, things that are hardly acceptable in third-world and developing countries.
      HG

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  6. I followed the link at the bottom of this post to read some of the other submissions sent and have read the submission by the Jersey Government with great interest.

    They make a series of recommendations in their submission including this one -

    "In granting Royal Assent, the MoJ should rely upon the judgement of the Insular
    Law Officers and the scrutiny by Ministry of Justice lawyers should continue to
    reduce.
    "

    Anyone else find that as worrying as I do? The Jersey Government actually requesting LESS scrutiny by the UK.

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  7. "In granting Royal Assent, the MoJ should rely upon the judgement of the Insular
    Law Officers and the scrutiny by Ministry of Justice lawyers should continue to
    reduce."

    WTF

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    1. This in unbelievable ! Gorst and Bailhache you pigs

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  8. Please don't tell me that the UK is trying to wash its hands of what passes for justice down here?

    The Beano is not the Rag

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    1. Beano/Sam.

      In reality the UK scrutinise nothing when it comes to the Jersey Judiciary It's merely a box ticking exercise. Look at all the evidence published on the Blogs (Jersey's only independent media) of alleged corruption, the illegal suspension of the Chief Police Officer, closing down a child abuse police investigation leaving more questions than answers. Only bringing a handful of abusers to court which didn't include any management/Civil Servants.

      Just look at the 10 points made in Deputy Higgins' submission, all this plus much, much more has been allowed to go on with the supposed oversight of the UK. This has all been able to go on with the UK's blessing.

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  9. Perhaps we need to sue the UK for not giving the people of Jersey the Good Governance they themselves in the constitution wrote! they are obviously not doing it are they?

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  10. sorry you don't see fit to publish my comments. But I am sick of all of this anyway, so I am calling it a day with the blogs and the whole matter until the church next personally attack me, whether that be through police or Dame Steele or whatever. HG

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    1. HG.

      Sorry I missed your comment and have now found it and published. Please accept my apologies.

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    2. HG, if that's what you need to do to continue to heal, I wish you well. I remain very disillusioned with the Church over the whole matter.

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    3. sorry Voice, I am very stressed about everything, the Diocese of Winchester and the Deanery of Jersey between them have left me very upset and I wish I could simply walk away from it all. HG

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  11. Another brave, honourable and determined politician.

    May I wish you the very best in your quest to clean up this Island Mike.

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  12. Dear HG, please be rest you are in my thoughts. I hope to meet you one day. I hope you have the support around you and that you are okay. x

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  13. Hi anonymous, I am ok, just very tired, I am at my friend's house, I have been tucked up on her sofa for the last 24 hours and will be here for at least another 12, maybe I will feel better tomorrow. Thank you for your concern and kind thoughts. HG

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  14. Just read all the Jersey blogs, and what a bloody terrific job they are doing putting all the real information out for Jersey to read a free press. I also bet Deputies Pitman and Higgins were not at the Atlantic Hotel by accident. With all these blog owners working so hard, giving up so much time,to bring the truth and nothing but, and hand full of deputies with backbones of steel fighting for the same truth and what do 90,000 residents actually do to to help the good guys absolutely nothing.

    This means Jersey residents are generally Pathetic, so get a life now, and make an effort to get back control. The so called establishment forgot a long time ago that you should be the target of their work to make your lives better. They are only interested in power over you, lots of jollies to far off countries at your expense naturally, and treating you like a sheep, well lets face the vast majority of residents act like sheep so let them be herded abused and treated like shi*t.

    If you like yourself and Jersey ( your home ) protect it and make the effort. Or just roll over and get shafted.

    Your choice Mr and Mrs Sheep.

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  15. The Select Committee IS still accepting written submissions from the public. Any submissions can be written HERE.

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    1. Team Voice,

      According to this link, submissions ended at noon on the 10th May.

      http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/justice-committee/inquiries/crown-dependencies-2013/

      Are you sure that they are definitely still accepting submissions?

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    2. Sam.

      Deputy Trevor Pitman, and others, were told that the Committee will accept submissions up until the 10th of July.

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    3. Thank you! I better get writing then!

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    4. Hopefully more readers will also make a submission to the Committee and not to forget if any readers have evidence of wrong-doing/corruption by the public authorities mentioned in the main posting they will forward it on to Deputy Higgins.

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  16. Tom Gruchy has uploaded a video, to Youtube, of questions to the Select Committee which can be viewed HERE

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  17. They couldn't care less!

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  18. I did watch the video, one of the men was looking at his nails! It looked that way but it's the starting that counts, the UK have to take heed of what has been said and then deal with how they are going to help Jersey move into a move fairer place, not perfect but fair.

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  19. A little more COVER-UP from Police and Home Affairs!

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  20. I just do not get it. You bloggers have made some fantastic posts backed up with compelling evidence over the past couple of years, but when it comes to arguing your points in public as on BBC radio, in the last scrutiny panel review and now in front of this Justice Select Committee, you guys fail to get your points across coherently. The one point that springs to mind is when the guy asked you " Just what is wrong with having the bailiff in the states?" Stuart would of needed 3 hours to tell them exactly what is wrong with having the bailiff in the states, and would of left them in a position where they could of not argued otherwise.

    I appreciate that it is very hard to condense years of blogging evidence of corruption into a short sound bite, but in IMHO this is something you really need to work at. The MSN/select committee/european courts/general public will only ever give you a few seconds of air time, so you need to make it count and have a well rehearsed, well thought out, clear delivered message to hand. You need to work at this if you wish to be taken seriously. And until you do, no one is going to take any notice.

    Believe me when i say i am 100% on your side, but when i watched that youtube clip, i felt the opportunity that you had to get your point across, slipped away before our very eyes. Prawn cocktail or no prawn cocktail, PB and IG would of done a better job of convincing the select committee that all is rosy in the garden of tax avoidance

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  21. Which hotel are they staying at?
    Can we picket them?

    Old boy network- cosmetic purpose- will go back saying everything in Jersey is rosy.

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  22. Distinguishing between immigration and....CONTROL

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  23. Jersey will feature in the Sunday Express newspaper tomorrow. Be sure to buy a copy.

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  24. VFC,

    Just saw that you and Rico have been described by the Express as "the island's modern-day Bergeracs." Always nice to see you getting recognition for carrying the reporting burden for news the mainstream (paid) media fails to deliver.

    Elle

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    1. Thanks Elle. You might also be aware that Rico will be appearing on a documentary tonight at 9pm on the Crime & Investigation channel. National Media is starting to learn who to come to for credible news sources and are also learning that it's not the local State Media.

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    2. I will try to find a way to access that documentary. Thank you!

      Elle

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  25. On institutionalised corruption; can someone do a 'link' for this please :

    http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/411342/Stephen-Lawrence-smear-investigation-Institutional-deceit-is-damaging-opinion-of-police

    "AS another storm swirled around Scotland Yard last week, sucking in officers over alleged secret smear operations against Stephen Lawrence’s family, three MPs boarded a plane for the Channel Island haven of Jersey."

    Continues into a good article but is quite short and limited and does not even mention the constructive dismissal of good Police Chief Graham Power and his replacement with a pet copper on a leash.

    There is a comments section for the Sunday Express story if people wish to register on the site. It might be worth submitting links to some of the good blog postings from the past that will fill in some of the blanks that the article did not have time for.

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  26. I see on twitter that Ted Jeory asked for a link to any BBC Radio Jersey programme recording from today, where they DIDN'T cover his Jersey related story, which was surely the most relevant of the day.

    The recording should appear here later today

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/radiojersey/latest-programmes

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  27. Papers not arrived on the Island today.

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  28. OK, fair point. Fog has prevented delivery of UK national newspapers to Jersey today. That is of course a reasonable explanation for why the story was not covered by BBC Jersey's newspaper review.

    The story is nevertheless online. There is no reason why BBC Jersey's reporters should not cover the story.

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    1. Furthermore the article was sent to the BBC by Bloggers and others.

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  29. VFC, good work fighting the trolls and the astroturfing over on the Express' website.

    I note that the website deliberately put XXX in any URL, probably to stop bad guys posting bad links. This results in broken links to your site, unfortunately.

    You can overcome this by posting a new comment clarifying that your blog addresses are "voiceforchildren dot blogspot dot com" and "ricosorda dot blogspot dot com". Then list the dates of the entries that people should look at.

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  30. From a local retired police sergeant do not trust the police.

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  31. Perhaps the other main story Mr Jeory should look into: why the BBC and other local mainstream media do not cover the more significant news, the scoops real investigative journalists like you and your fellow bloggers have reported. National and international journalists should be dumbfounded by the numerous complaints on the abuse coverup-complicit behaviour of the local BBC in this post-Savile era.

    Elle

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  32. Like your previous featured post on a speech by former Deputy Pitman this is of great importance. Deputy Higgins is a very honest and courageous man. I really miss listening to him and Pitman 'double team' in the States backing each other up on important challenges to the Council of Millionaires. I can only imagine Deputy Higgins misses his former colleague just as much? To often these days he is the only discenting voice.

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