Now that I am retired having been many years a magistrate with a long awareness of the declining freedoms enjoyed by the ordinary citizen and a corresponding fear of the big brother state`s ever increasing encroachment on civil liberties I hope that my personal observations within these general parameters will be of interest to those with an open mind. Having been blogging with this title for many years against the rules of the Ministry of Justice my new found freedom should allow me to be less inhibited in these observations.





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Monday, 26 September 2016

THE NON TRIAL OF JOHN O` NEILL

Since January this year the  tale of the man who was required to give police 24 hours notice prior to engaging in sexual activity has provided this blogger and many others with a story simultaneously of mirth and profound dismay.  The apparent conclusion to this tale of which Kafka might have been hesitant to tell took place at York Magistrates` Court where District Judge Adrian Lower imposed twelve conditions on John O` Neill, a man acquitted of rape, and who has apparently no convictions for sexual violence.  These conditions relate to Mr O`Neill`s sexual intentions.

The legal system, quite correctly, has provision to charge and if necessary take to trial those suspected of planning to commit disorder or worse.  But this man is legally innocent of any such intent. By any standards it is a blot on the face of English justice that he has been made subject to such restraints in the same week that it was revealed that a Detective Superintendant was effectively sacked for allowing a murderer to incriminate himself willingly and without any coercion apart from the pleasure of smoking a cigarette whilst so doing.  

The activities of police with regard to what is known all too widely  as domestic violence and victim orientated investigations are becoming increasingly arbritary in their acting as judge,  jury and executioner where the ancient concept of innocent until proved guilty has become an anachronism.

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