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Archive for the ‘investigation’


Passing the buck 178

Posted on May 20, 2020 by

With commendable swiftness, we’ve received a reply to our letter of earlier this week to the Cabinet Secretary for Justice. You can read it in full below (click to enlarge).

Sadly, however, it’s precisely the sort of evasion we expected, and it is not acceptable.

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A bit of spot colour 141

Posted on May 19, 2020 by

We thought readers might be interested in a small update on yesterday’s post. As we told you, Graham Shields – the Head of Strategic Communications and Engagement at the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service who fobbed off our complaint about newspapers enabling the identification of sexual assault accusers – was the editor of the Evening Times until he was let go in December 2017.

Which is just two months after this happened:

So you’d think that if anyone knew what jigsaw identification looked like, he would.

A letter to Humza Yousaf 299

Posted on May 18, 2020 by

As we still haven’t received any response from the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service, we sent this letter to the Cabinet Secretary for Justice today. Some passages have been redacted in accordance with contempt-of-court law.

We hope he’s listening.

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The appearance of justice 228

Posted on May 12, 2020 by

It’s now more than a month since this site revealed the widespread breach by a number of Scottish journalists/newspapers – the most prominent being Dani Garavelli of Scotland On Sunday and Tortoise Media – of the legally-protected anonymity of one of the accusers in the Alex Salmond trial.

Until last week we’d had no response from the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) beyond an initial acknowledgement, and no action of any kind had apparently been taken against any of the perpetrators, even though the pro-Salmond blogger Craig Murray has been cited for prosecution for allegedly similar breaches.

Alarmingly, all of the information identifying the woman was (and at the time of writing this article is) still publicly available in their articles, exposing her to possible danger. So last week we got in touch with the COPFS to seek clarification.

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Best served cold 278

Posted on March 28, 2020 by

An innocent man 950

Posted on March 23, 2020 by

Today a mostly-female jury drawn from the most Unionist city in Scotland and directed by a female judge delivered the only verdict it was credibly possible to reach on the (total absence of) evidence before it: that Alex Salmond was not guilty of any crime.

After two weeks hearing an assortment of lurid allegations from former friends and colleagues hidden behind cloaks of public anonymity, the jury – having been advised by the prosecuting counsel that they were the sole arbiters of fact – decided that there was no truth to them.

Since the two most serious charges, in particular, were both matters of the accuser’s word against that of the accused, and the two parties gave completely irreconcilable accounts of the facts (rather than competing interpretations of agreed events), it can only be the case that one side was lying absolutely, and the jury decided that it was the anonymous accusers who were doing so.

It remains to see whether there will be a legal reckoning for those lies. But more than one sort of reckoning will surely follow from these events.

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The Betrayer 516

Posted on January 31, 2020 by

So that’s it, then. That’s the grand plan.

We’re sorry, but we’d say the game’s a bogey, gang.

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The Ringer 167

Posted on December 09, 2019 by

Scottish Labour would like you to meet Rory.

They want you to believe that he was an SNP member and independence voter who’s recently changed his mind and become a devolutionist Labour supporter.

But that’s not quite true.

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The game is still on 126

Posted on November 29, 2019 by

Particularly alert readers may recall this excellent documentary from 2017, exposing how Labour’s PFI scandal has cost the Scottish taxpayer countless billions of pounds and crippled local government for decades with its extortionate financial legacy, as illustrated by the case of North Ayrshire.

Well, now there’s another one of it.

The title is self-explanatory, and it’s worth half an hour of your time.

The Panel 426

Posted on November 19, 2019 by

This, frankly, is something that we should have done years before now. But it’s never too late to start.

One of the most annoying and undemocratic things about modern politics is the ease with which MPs and candidates can simply ignore the electorate. I’ve attempted to politely ask my own MP, Wera Hobhouse of the Liberal Democrats, a question on several occasions and had only dead air in response, and many readers report similar from their own representatives.

What that means, among other things, is that it can be impossible to have any idea what someone stands for on a given issue before you vote for them. And that’s plainly unacceptable in a democracy.

However, when there’s an election on, there’s something you can do about it.

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From the Information Commissioner 380

Posted on September 11, 2019 by

We’d almost forgotten the delirious pleasure of having something to write about that isn’t sodding Brexit, so thank heavens for this email today:

It’s the outcome of a case that we’ve been pursuing since February, and while it’s a very welcome step it’s still not quite good enough.

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Standard Wales Check #2 394

Posted on July 28, 2019 by

We’re being somewhat generous with the numbering here, to be honest, but you’ve got to start the official count somewhere, right?

Alert readers will recall that current Scottish Labour policy is to enshrine in law the right to a free bus pass for all Scots over the age of 60:

This time last year, for example, their transport spokesman Colin Smyth specifically and indignantly condemned any possible suggestion by the dastardly SNP of perhaps increasing the qualifying age from 60 to state pension age (currently 65 and due to rise to 68 and beyond), saying:

“Sadly, the scheme is now under threat with SNP ministers refusing the rule out increasing the age citizens can qualify for a pass in a bid to try and save money. Ordinary people in their 60s should not be paying the price of Tory austerity because the SNP refuse to use the powers of the parliament to fund our services properly.”

A commendably unambiguous and righteous position. Indeed, the North British branch of Jeremy Corbyn’s socialist party announced at this year’s conference that if elected they’d not only keep the threshold at 60, but would extend free bus travel immediately to everyone in Scotland under 25, and then swiftly to everyone of any age.

So we can safely assume that in Wales, where Labour have been in power for all 20 years of the devolved Assembly, all those things will already be happening, because otherwise it’d just be embarrassing.

At the very least, we can be certain that there’s no chance of the qualifying age going up from 60 to state pension age, because we already know that Labour regard that as a scandalous and unthinkable moral outrage.

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