Friday, July 06, 2012

The kangaroo court?

The Service Justice System and the Criminal Justice System both operate in the United Kingdom. They are similar, but certainly not identical.

Where they are different, they are different in a way that could be frightening....

Odds: 10/2 - If you are a civilian being tried at crown court for murder, all you have to do is convince two out of twelve of your 'peers' that you are not guilty......

Odds: 4/3 - If you are a member of the Armed Forces being tried at a court martial for murder, all you have to do is convince four out of seven senior members of the Armed Forces that you are not guilty.....

A Court Martial can sentence a person convicted of a service offence to life imprisonment. The jury at the court martial is made up of three to seven serviceman consisting of officers and warrant officers.

A Crown Court can sentence a person convicted of an offence to life imprisonment. The jury at a crown court is made up of twelve men and women, 'peers' of the defendant. The definition of 'peers' is as follows:

'A person who is equal to another in abilities, qualifications, age, background, and social status.'

Imagine being a young enlisted serviceman, on trial for murder at a Court Martial, walking into the court room, finding out that you are going to be judged by not twelve, but seven, that they are not your peers, but are unlike you in most ways possible, and that it will not have to be a unanimous verdict, but a majority verdict, that could send you to prison for the rest of your life.......

Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights states:

'In the determination of his civil rights and obligations or of any criminal charge against him, everyone is entitled to a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial tribunal established by law.' 

Has somebody missed something of grave consequence here?

'I want you to help me create a new atmosphere in our country, an atmosphere in which we back, revere and support our military.'

David Cameron, The Prime Minister.


At 7:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder if a case has ever gone to the ECHR and had a Court Martial verdict overturned.

At 10:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So what are the odds when it's an internal investigation of a police officer at a disciplinary hearing facing a trumped up complaint?

And what is the definition of timely weeks, months, years?


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