Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Jersey Child Abuse Inquiry and William Bailhache.

After a five week break the Jersey Child Abuse Committee Of Inquiry recommences its Public Hearings a week today (Tuesday 26 May 2015) where it starts phase 1(b) of its investigation.

We would like to bring readers attention to where the Inquiry left off, and in particular, the testimony given by Witness “Mr.K” who is a suspected prolific paedophile. Also we look at the former Attorney General, and now Bailiff, William Bailhache and his (the latter’s) PRESS STATEMENT.

As we have reported previously (link above) there was public out-cry and suspicion over William Bailhache’s (then Attorney General) decision to drop somewhere in the region of a dozen abuse cases and only offer the public/victims/survivors a couple of SHOW TRIALS. It became apparent that out of 121 living abuse suspects only 8 were charged (93% were never charged) and there were seven, out of the eight, convicted.

Witness “Mr. K” was one of those suspects who weren’t brought before a Jersey Court, so just like so many others escaped (what passes for) justice. But what happens when some of the reasons for not prosecuting “Mr K” are looked at and lightly questioned? Do the reasons (of William Bailhache) stand up to scrutiny? We would argue NO they don’t and the conduct of the Attorney General’s Office needs a bright light shone into it.

Unfortunately we don’t have a mainstream media on the island to shine that bright light and it is left to Bloggers to inform the public of what is taking place and being omitted by the MSM, as we have all through the Jersey Child Abuse Cover-up.

The transcripts below are taken from day 66 (April 15 2015) of the Inquiry and can be read in their entirety HERE. The local State Media was present at this Hearing, yet even after Yours Truly went into the Media Room (from which Bloggers are BANNED) and pointed out that William Bailhache looks to have been shown as a liar, or at the very least, been given false information which he published in his 2009 press release. NONE of the local State Media have reported the apparent discrepancies.

PATRICK SAAD is Counsel to the Inquiry and is questioning suspected prolific paedophile Witness "Mr. K" in the transcript below.


Patrick Saad -Thank you.  You say at paragraph 118 of your statement {WS000544/23}:

"The Attorney General commented in his open letter that so many people had been willing to come to my defence and to stand up for me to say that I am a good person."

Can we go back again please to the Attorney General's letter, {WD005402} and can we go to page 3 {WD005402/3}, and, as of course I recognise, Mr K, these are very serious allegations made against you and you are setting out why you say these allegations are wrong and in support of that you take us to a paragraph in the Attorney General's letter and you say that "people stand up for me to say that I am a good person". What the Attorney General in fact says at the bottom of page 3 is: 

"Furthermore, the police investigation shows relevant defence material including the fact that a significant number of witnesses speak well of [witness 7] (Witness “Mr.K”) describing his popularity with the children and his good qualities in dealing with the children generally." Then it goes on to say:

"He received consistently good reports from those responsible for monitoring and evaluating his performance."

I think it is right to say that as far as your time at Haut de la Garenne is concerned, there were no such reports, there were no such monitoring, is that right?

MR. K - No.

Patrick Saad - Sorry, is that answer "no, you are not right", or "no, there weren't"?

Mr. K - I believe that -- there wasn't any formal reports. However, I have to be very careful here because it is impossible to answer without disclosing certain things which I don't want to disclose.

Patrick Saad - I understand that, Mr K.  So if you can limit your answer to my question, which I'm going to ask you again: was your performance at Haut de la Garenne, in the time that you were employed there, formally evaluated and recorded?

Mr. K - No.  However, it would have been verbally.

Patrick Saad - And how do you know that?

Mr. K - I can't answer that question again because it will be revealing, but I did move on to other employment where I would have been recommended from my record at Haut de la Garenne.(END TRANSCRIPT)

So there we have the first apparent discrepancy in William Bailhache’s “reason” for not prosecuting Witness “Mr K” who, incidentally, is rumoured to be a friend of Mr. Bailhache. William Bailhache claims, "He (witness “Mr. k”) received consistently good reports from those responsible for monitoring and evaluating his performance." But when “MR. K.” is questioned about this he says the reports, and, monitoring, didn’t exist. This alone raises serious doubts over the authenticity of the information contained in William Bailhache’s Press Release and “reason” for not prosecuting “Mr. K”

Secondly we look at (or Patrick Saad does) another “reason” Mr. Bailhache refused to prosecute “Mr. K.”

From William Bailhache June 2009 statement

In another case, the complainant described sustaining 300 to 400 cigarette burn marks and a branding which required a skin graft, but there is no physical sign of any injury”

Begin Transcript.

Patrick Saad - Paragraph 106 to 108, this resident says that he was burnt or branded and sexually assaulted by you {WS000544/21}.  The documentation that the Inquiry has been taken to in the course of the evidence in previous months shows that this resident was not there at the same time as you, or strictly, on one view of the documents, maybe overlapping by three to four days and you set out the reasons why the allegations should not be believed, apart from that issue. I just want to take up with you please, if I may, something you say at paragraph 108 {WS000544/22} and this is in relation to the burns:

"[This witness] also alleged that I had (Witness Mr. K”) burnt him 20 times or more with a cigarette and branded him. This allegation was disproved as he had been examined by a doctor who had been unable to find any marks or branding on his body." I just want to explore with you the issue of it being "disproved", you use that expression again. Can we have up on screen please {WD003510}. What we're going to look at, Mr K, is a medical report dated June 2014 which was commissioned for the Redress Scheme and which this witness exhibited to their evidence and it is evidence that has been before the Inquiry, and it is a medical report prepared by a Jason Payne-James. If we could go to page 2 please {WD003510/2}.We can see the credentials there of the doctor.  If we go to page 3 please {WD003510/3} and we see that he is a registered medical practitioner, he is a specialist in forensic and legal medicine and he says this at paragraph 4:

"For More than 20 years I have assessed several hundred assailants and/or victims (adult and child) in varying cases of assault or injury each year including sexual offence examination, torture and asylum cases ..."

He goes on to say at paragraph 5 "I am editor of the Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine" and he goes on to set out the extent of his experience.

Could we go please to page 15 {WD003510/15} and a large block of black there, but paragraph 200:

"On examination of his back there were numerous pale mature scars generally less than ... in size down to about [so much] in size.  They extended across [an area of the back], they were in no fixed pattern and of no particular shape. They represent areas of skin that have sustained damage of an extent enough to result in residual scars. Causes could include cigarette burns, insect bites, chickenpox (although other lesions were not noted elsewhere) ..."

I think that's said in relation to the chickenpox: " ... and infected acne (he was not aware that he acne)."

If we go to page 23 {WD003510/23} and we look at the top there, Mr K, paragraph 258: "The small pale scars to the back are consistent with cigarette burns but there are many other possible causes (although none I could elicit from the history)." Then on the same page, 268, the expert witness is addressing questions that he was posed in his instructions in relation to this witness and he repeats those instructions at 268:

"If I am of the opinion there are any inconsistencies between what [48] (alleged victim) tells me at the interview and the
documentation provided to me, which I consider relevant, set them out ..."
He says this: "I find the marks and scars on [witness 48] at the least consistent with his account ..."

You say that the allegation of burning has been disproved, to use that phrase. In the light of this evidence, which I know until you came to the Inquiry yesterday you had not seen, do you want to comment any further?  Is it again your view that it is the role of the police to disprove or prove an allegation?

Mr. K - I'm going to comment on this.  I note the words "at least consistent", right, but I think that we should bring the Attorney General's statement please.

Patrick Saad - Yes. If you bear with me a moment, I will just get the reference for that.  It is {WD005402} please.  On to page 3 {WD005402/3}, the main paragraph there, Mr K. What is it you would like the Inquiry's attention brought to?

Mr. K - It is somewhere here.

Patrick Saad – If you need more time, please ...

Mr. K - Oh, yes, it is -- actually instead of 20 cigarette burns he says I burnt him 300 to 400 times and branded him:
"... which required a skin graft, but there is no physical sign of any injury nor do the records show that [whoever he was] was at Haut de la Garenne at the ... time."
So I wrote my statement with this knowledge from the Attorney General who had received that information from the police who I'm sure, as no expense was spared during the investigation, had an expert examine this person and reach that conclusion.
This would have been typical of any inquiry when you would have professional dispute about injuries.

Patrick Saad - My only issue with you, Mr K, in relation to this part of the evidence is again your choice of the word "disproved", but you have given your response and your account.(END TRANSCRIPT)

So we have, in former Attorney General William Bailhache’s statement, and another “reason” for not prosecuting witness “Mr. K” that “there is no physical sign of any injury.”

But from Jason Payne-James registered medical practitioner, and specialist in forensic and legal medicine’ "On examination of his back there were numerous pale mature scars generally less than ... in size down to about [so much] in size.  They extended across [an area of the back], they were in no fixed pattern and of no particular shape.  They represent areas of skin that have sustained damage of an extent enough to result in residual scars.  Causes could include cigarette burns”

Just these couple of discrepancies in William Bailhache’s decision not to prosecute witness “Mr. K” bring serious doubts over his integrity/honesty and professional capacity to hold the office he did and does. It further adds evidenced weight to the theory that it’s the paedophiles who are protected by Jersey’s “Justice” System and the Victims/Survivors (like the most of us) DO NOT enjoy the protection of law.

It also adds weight to the claim that the Child Abuse Investigation (Operation Rectangle) should be re-opened and should NEVER have been SHUT DOWN.

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Former Politician Raising Money, And Awareness, For sufferers of M.E.

Former Jersey Deputy, Shona Pitman, is embarking on a 1,200 mile walk from Land's End to John O' Groats in order to raise money, and awareness, for M.E.

Mrs. Pitman, a long time campaigner against Child Abuse, and its cover up in Jersey, has issued a Press Release reproduced below.

Team Voice interviewed the former Deputy before she set off on her epic journey and discussed her 15 year battle with this debilitating illness and why she suffered in silence with it for so long. We hope our readers/viewers will find the interview (and Press Release) of some interest and might consider donating whatever they are able to afford to this worthy cause?


ME Sufferer Walks 1200 miles Across Britain

With the support of the Association for Young People with ME (AYME) and ACTION FOR ME, Shona Pitman (an ME sufferer of 15 years) will be embarking on a 1200 mile route walk from Land’s End to John O’Groats on the first day of the International ME Awareness Week – this being the 12th of May. 

Due to the physical effects of her ME, the journey is estimated to take up to five months to complete.  During this time, Shona’s  intention is to stop and speak to raise awareness about ME and funds for the above charities (with the target of £4000.00 each – see the Just Giving website to donate) HERE and HERE at as many national, county, city and town TV and radio stations and newspapers, as is possible, throughout the course of the walk.  These charities undertake great work in supporting research and informing and supporting sufferers, the wider public and Government about the illness - they deserve all the help and recognition possible.

Initially, Shona was undertaking the challenge with a gentleman who also has ME.  Unfortunately the severity of his ME at this present time is such that he cannot start the walk with her.  However, Shona is hopeful that he will still be able to join her on the trek at some point. ‘Baz has put in such a lot of work to help make this fund and awareness raising challenge happen’, Shona says. ‘I thus very much hope he will be able to join me when and wherever he can’.

Why she is doing it: There are an estimated 250,000 people in the UK (with 25,000 of those being children and young people), living with the illness.   Each experiencing the symptoms listed below - to different degrees.  Please note, these are just some of the symptoms:

·      Brain fog, poor concentration, confusion, short-term memory problems
·      Reduced coping skills, depression, mood swings, anxiety
·      Intolerance to certain foods, drinks, drugs and chemicals
·      Digestive and detoxification problems
·      Weakened immune system
·      Sensitivity to light and noise
·      Joint and muscle pain
·      Chronic and persistent fatigue

The degree of the illness and symptoms can vary from person to person and so too can they vary within the sufferer, depending on the levels of stress to the body and/or mind.  Some sufferers are able to work; some are housebound; and some are even bedbound and need physical assistant with the most basic of tasks such as: changing clothes, preparing meals and even going to the toilet.  The illness may affect a person for just a few years or it may be decades. 

With medical conditions like ME also being what may be called a ‘hidden disability’, the truth is that the lack of awareness amongst the public, the medical profession and Government about the illness, leaves most sufferers and their families to ‘deal with it’ themselves in whatever way they can afford.   This can be as stressful as living with the illness itself and can regularly make symptoms even worse. 

Increasing awareness and understanding is absolutely crucial in support of ensuring adequate funding is made available at Government and local authority levels.  Within this context, Shona will also be talking about how the work of the Optimum Health Clinic (a private Clinic treating ME sufferers) have made a huge positive difference to her own mental and physical state in just a few months of starting their on-line computer course; and will be assisting them with their own fundraising for a very significant undertaking that they are also launching in May.

‘The irony is’ states Shona ‘ if Governments accommodated for the need properly, it would actually save taxpayers money in the long-term because sufferers can fully recover or their health may at least improve sufficiently to a point where they may be able to work and once again be able to contribute to the economy and thus the Treasury’.  Health Services, Social Security, Housing and other Departments would then save money in the long-run.  This is undoubtedly a major issue that politicians are always apparently concerned about – making savings!  ‘The bottom line is that with adequate funding for support and greater research quality of life can  be significantly enhanced’.

Shona is very passionate about pushing this subject in to the position of public and Government awareness it so deserves and to where sufferers have waited for, for far too long.  In essence - to achieve official recognition that ME is as serious as many far better understood debilitating illnesses which as a consequence, receive more appropriate levels of political backing for the funding of public service provision and research.  For this reason, she feels it necessary that it should be a person who has the illness to make this point - and do it in a big way. 

As Shona states: ‘This is what I wish to play my part in by undertaking this marathon walk; and by talking about the realities of ME to all and anyone willing to listen - not least national and local media who have so much potential to force those in positions of power to take note. ME is very real and at present it is ruining a lot of lives, which with greater awareness and funding could be made so much better'.

Saturday, 2 May 2015

Attorney General (William Bailhache) Press Statement.

In preparation for an up-coming Blog Posting, and for the historical documented record, we offer (below) a statement made in June 2009 by the then Attorney General, and now Bailiff, William Bailhache.

Those who have been following the Jersey Child Abuse cover-up, and related events, will be aware that very few prosecutions were brought against alleged offenders and the then AG dropped around a dozen cases which brought anger, and outrage, from Abuse Survivors/Victims and their supporters who staged a PROTEST in response. The people of Jersey were offered a couple of SHOW TRIALS and the Jersey Establishment, and STATE MEDIA, set about discrediting the Child Abuse Investigation, (Operation Rectangle) suspended the Chief of Police, (possibly illegally) and went on to close the investigation DOWN.

Questions have been, and still are being asked, about William Bailhache's decision to drop so many cases which fuelled the fire of suspicion surrounding the politicised, and corrupt, Jersey "JUSTICE" SYSTEM.

We offer Mr. Bailhache's 2009 statement below because he will have serious questions to answer because of it, not only in our up-coming Blog Posting, but when he undoubtedly is called as a witness before the ongoing Public Child Abuse INQUIRY.

William Bailhache Press Statement June 3rd 2009.

Attorney-General William Bailhache said this morning two historic abuse investigations have been dropped because of a lack of evidence.

The multi-million pound two and a half year investigation has resulted in three people facing charges. At one time there were 70 suspects.

In the end, police presented six case files to Attorney-General William Bailhache. But the police say they have more files to send him.

As for the victim's statements, but Mr Bailhace said cases often came down to being the word of one person against another.

A decision not to bring criminal proceedings doesn't, he says, mean that those who have made complaints are not believed, nor does it necessarily mean that any account given by a suspect has been believed.

The statement from the Attorney General is reproduced in full below:-

The Attorney General last made a statement on 26th August, 2008 when he announced that of the six files which had then been received by the prosecution lawyers, charges had been laid in respect of three of them, one file had been returned to the police for further investigations, and a decision had been taken in relation to one of the remaining two files that no charges would be brought. Further police investigations have now been conducted and a decision has now been made that for legal and evidential reasons, no charges will be brought in respect of either of the two outstanding files. A full statement of reasons is set out below.

Cases of this nature are often difficult. There is rarely any independent evidence, and often the cases come down to being the word of one person against another. In a criminal trial, it is not a question of the Magistrate or the jury deciding which version of events they prefer. The prosecution most prove its case beyond all reasonable doubt, and if there is any doubt, an accused person is entitled to be found not guilty. Before bringing a criminal prosecution, there must be sufficient evidence such that there is a realistic prospect of conviction. A decision not to bring criminal proceedings does not necessarily mean that those who have made complaints are not believed, nor does it necessarily mean that any account given by a suspect has been believed. A decision not to prosecute means only that the Attorney General, having fully considered all of the available evidence and other information, has decided that an acquittal is more likely than a conviction.

A decision not to prosecute is capable of being perceived as denying the complainant the right to be heard. Indeed, this can lead to a pressure to allow the complainant to have his or her day in Court. However to succumb to such pressure would mean that the prosecution was not applying the evidential test which is its function to apply. The Courts are entitled to know that they are not faced with prosecutions which even the prosecutor thinks will not succeed. The criminal justice system as a whole requires each part of that system – police, prosecutors and Courts – to fulfil its functions professionally and properly. To compromise the test to allow evidentially weak cases to proceed is not an exercise of the objective approach which is demanded of prosecutors by the Code on the Decision to Prosecute. It is not fair to anyone – the complainants, the accused, the witnesses or the public – to do otherwise than apply the evidential test professionally and objectively.

Case 5

Nine complainants have made complaints against Mr. A, now a middle aged man who spent approximately 5 to 6 years as a junior trainee and then employee at Haut de la Garenne in the 1970s and 1980s. The complaints relate to incidents which are alleged to have taken place between 20 and 30 years ago. Four of them contained allegations of different types of sexual offending, some of it of the most serious nature; all but two were alleged to have taken place at Haut de la Garenne.

The police have conducted a very thorough and detailed investigation tracing and interviewing all known witnesses before submitting the papers to the independent lawyers instructed by the Attorney General.

In none of the cases is the complaint corroborated by any independent evidence, and none of the complaints is sufficiently similar in nature to suggest that they might supply mutual corroboration.

In two cases, the employment records show that the complainants were not at Haut de la Garenne at the same time as Mr. A. In two of the cases, the makers of the statements were not those against whom the alleged crimes were committed, the alleged victims no longer being alive.

In three of the cases, the complainants are intrinsically not credible for different reasons, one of them being that the complainant described assaults taking place in a cellar, in the bath and with the use of the shackles described in the media reports, the statement being made for the first time after the media reports had been published. In another case, the complainant described sustaining 300 to 400 cigarette burn marks and a branding which required a skin graft, but there is no physical sign of any injury nor do the records show that Mr. A was at Haut de la Garenne at the same time. In those circumstances it was inevitable that it be concluded this complaint was incapable of belief. It is this complainant who makes the most serious allegations of sexual offending. In another case, the complainant’s mother, who was allegedly present at the time and gave her permission for the assaults, says they never took place.

Furthermore, the police investigation shows relevant defence material including the fact that a significant number of witnesses speak well of Mr. A. describing his popularity with the children and his good qualities in dealing with the children generally. He received consistently good reports from those responsible for monitoring and evaluating his performance.

The papers have been carefully evaluated by those lawyers, by a senior lawyer in the Law Officers’ Department and by the Attorney General personally. None of the lawyers who have looked at this matter considers that the evidential test is passed.

Case 6


In about May 1997, police received information that there was suspected historical child abuse committed by a man and a woman between 1980 and 1990 upon various ex-residents of a Children’s Home in St. Clement, Jersey. The woman had been employed as a “house mother” and although her husband was not employed in any such capacity, it appeared that he played a full part in the running of the Home, which closed in 1990. Following a police investigation in 1997, a number of charges of grave and criminal assault and common assault were brought against both the man and the woman in the Magistrate’s Court. Following an initial hearing, the Magistrate dismissed some of the charges on the grounds that there was no sufficient prima facie evidence to commit the accused to the Royal Court, but in respect of other charges, the defendants were committed for trial in the Royal Court.

When the matter was received in the then Attorney General’s Chambers, the case file was passed to a private sector Crown Advocate with the request that there should be a full evidential review. The Crown Advocate carried out that review and concluded that there were evidential problems. In the circumstances he recommended that the prosecution should go no further.

On receipt of that review, the then Attorney General convened a case conference which was attended by the private sector Crown Advocate, a departmental lawyer, the police officer in charge of the case, a representative of the Children’s Service and the Attorney General himself. The meeting analysed the evidence on each charge having regard to the memoranda prepared by the private sector Crown Advocate. The then Attorney General concluded that there was insufficient evidence to have any realistic prospect of conviction and that in the circumstances it would not be right to proceed. No-one dissented from this view, which indeed was positively endorsed by the other two lawyers present. Although all present were aware of the assertion that one of the couple was suffering from a terminal illness, this possibility was expressly not a factor taken into account in reaching a decision, which was taken entirely on an assessment of the evidential test.

Following that meeting, the Crown formally abandoned the prosecution before the Royal Court in 1998 on the grounds that there was insufficient evidence to support it.

Developments in 2008/9

Between 29th April and 9th July, 2008, the independent prosecution lawyers instructed by the Attorney General were provided by the police with a number of statements in relation to this case. These included both the original material arising out of the 1998 investigation, and an amount of new material. Those lawyers provided advice to the Attorney General on 18th and 22nd July, 2008. At the request of the police in the autumn of last year, the Attorney General made an application for mutual legal assistance from the French Authorities to enable an interview with the couple to take place in France. In February this year, the necessary confirmations from the competent authorities in France were obtained but the attempts to interview the couple proved unsuccessful. The decision has thus been taken based on the evidence available in July last year.

The present case raises the difficult question of what approach ought to be taken when a prospective defendant has been given a clear indication by the prosecuting authorities that s/he will not be prosecuted.

The Attorney General has noted that in a written answer given in the House of Commons on 31st March, 1993, the Attorney General of England and Wales, responding to a question relating to the re-institution of proceedings which had been terminated said this:

“The fundamental consideration remains that individuals should be able to rely on decisions taken by the prosecuting authorities. The policy of the Director of Public Prosecutions is that a decision to terminate proceedings or not to prosecute should not, in the absence of special circumstances, be altered once it has been communicated to the defendant or prospective defendant unless it was taken and expressed to be taken because the evidence was insufficient. In such a case it would be appropriate to reconsider the decision if further significant evidence were to become available at a later date – especially if the alleged offence is a serious one.

Special circumstances which might justify departure from this policy include:

(i) rare cases where reconsideration of the original decision shows that it was not justified and the maintenance of confidence in the criminal justice system requires that a prosecution be brought notwithstanding the earlier decision; and

(ii) those cases where termination has been effected specifically with a view to the collection and preparation of the necessary evidence which is thought likely to become available in the fairly near future. In such circumstances, the CPS will advise the defendant of the possibility that proceedings will be reinstituted. “

The Attorney General has also noted the Crown Prosecution Service website at paragraph 12, which reads as follows:

“12. Restarting a Prosecution

12.1 People should be able to rely on decisions taken by the Crown Prosecution Service. Normally if the Crown Prosecution Service tells a suspect or defendant that there will not be a prosecution or that the prosecution has been stopped, that is the end of the matter and the case will not start again. But occasionally there are special reasons why the Crown Prosecution Service will restart the prosecution, particularly if the case is serious.

12.2 These reasons included:

(a) rare cases where a new look at the original decision shows that it was clearly wrong and should not be allowed to stand;

(b) cases which are stopped so that more evidence which is likely to become available in the fairly near future can be collected and prepared. In these cases the Crown Prosecutor will tell the defendant that the prosecution may well start again; and

(c) cases which are stopped because of a lack of evidence but where more significant evidence is discovered later.”

These appear to be well founded and sound principles upon which in the Attorney’s view the prosecution in Jersey should also proceed. The Attorney is of the view that, as in the United Kingdom, the damage which would be done to public confidence if people in Jersey could not rely upon decisions taken by the office of the Attorney General, particularly if those decisions were simply undone as a result of a change in the identity of the holder of the office, would be very significant indeed. For all these reasons, as a matter of principle, the Attorney General has adopted the approach which has been taken in the United Kingdom.

Accordingly, two particular lines of approach have been considered:

1. Given that the case in 1998 was not stopped so that more evidence might be likely to become available in the fairly near future, was this a case where it might be said that the decision taken in 1998 was clearly wrong?

2. Alternatively, could it be said that, although the case did not proceed because there was a lack of evidence in 1998, more significant evidence has been discovered subsequently which makes a difference to that decision?

On the first of those questions, the Attorney General has received written advice from both the private sector Crown Advocate and from leading Treasury counsel practising at the Central Criminal Court in London. A review has also been carried out by a senior lawyer in the Attorney’s Department and by the Attorney General himself. Having thoroughly considered this review and these advices the Attorney General has concluded that without any shadow of a doubt the decision in 1998 cannot be said to be one which was not justified, nor was it one which was clearly wrong.

One of the particular features of the advice received from senior Treasury counsel in London was that there was a strong probability that re-opening a prosecution in 2008 on the charges which could have been brought in 1998 would be struck out as an abuse of the process of the Court. Indeed, a defence submission that there was an abuse would only be overcome if there were very compelling and completely new evidence capable of removing the reasons for the 1998 decision, and if there were a good reason for the evidence not having been available before. Leading counsel took the view that the material which has become available since 1998 fell far short of providing any such exceptional justification, and that in the circumstances it would not be proper for the Attorney General to seek to reinstitute the criminal proceedings.

Attention was then given to whether or not there was any other significant new evidence which has been obtained. In particular, consideration was given to allegations of sexual assaults which had not previously been made. The advice received from the private sector Crown Advocate was that the evidential test was not met in relation to any such allegation. On his recommendation, the Attorney suggested that he take leading counsel’s advice from London to identify whether that view was shared. That advice was duly taken, and leading counsel has confirmed that, in his view as well, the evidential test is not met. These opinions have been further considered both by the Attorney General and by the senior lawyer in the Law Officers’ Department assisting him in these cases. Nothing in that further consideration has led the Attorney General to express any view contrary to the advice which has been received in respect of these sexual allegations.

In the circumstances, the Attorney General considers that, applying the above principles, there is no reason sufficient to re-open the decision taken by his predecessor in 1998.

The Attorney General realises, of course, that the complainants will be very disappointed with this decision, which has, of course, also been discussed with the police.

Nevertheless, hard decision though it may appear to some, the Attorney General is sure that a decision not to prosecute is the right and appropriate decision in these cases taken on the legal principles set out above.

3rd June, 2009. Law Officers’ Department