Posted on 31 October 2012.
Simon Hoggart of the ‘Guardian’ has a theory that if the opposite of a remark is plainly ludicrous, then the thing was not worth saying in the first place. So when David Cameron uses a major speech to announce his new policy on crime as ‘Tough but Intelligent’, Hoggart asks: “Does he mean that the previous policy was ‘limp but stupid’? ‘Feeble but demented?’” Read the full story
Posted in Criminal Justice
Posted on 28 October 2011.
Word has it that there have been some fierce knock’em down and drag’em out battles in cabinet between Theresa May and Kenneth Clarke on the subject of mandatory prison sentences. If that is the case the home secretary has triumphed. David Cameron has intervened and decided.
Clarke made clear his personal opposition to the use of mandatory sentences at a hearing of the Commons home affairs committee on Tuesday. His preference is to give judges unfettered discretion to set sentences based on the facts of the cases for nearly all crimes except murder. He also made clear his view that Read the full story
Posted in Criminal Justice, Law Updates
Posted on 03 October 2011.
Ken Clarke’s Ministry of Justice faces a legal challenge over its controversial plan to
scrap legal aid for victims of clinical negligence. The charity Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA) has issued legal proceedings for a judicial review of the decision.
AvMA Chief Executive Peter Walsh said: “Scrapping legal aid for clinical negligence is completely irrational whatever way you look at it, as well as grossly unfair. Ken Clarke’s department might save a little money, but the cost will simply be heaped on the NHS. Some of the most vulnerable people in society injured by negligent treatment at the hands of a State body will be denied access to justice.” Read the full story
Posted in Civil Law, Criminal Justice, Law Updates
Posted on 19 August 2011.
Margaret Thatcher’s priorities for the police were always clear. They were cosseted. Numbers, pay, overtime, the sky seemed to be the limit. Cynics would say that it was insurance for her contentious domestic policies, whether taking on the miners or introducing the poll tax.
David Cameron has been very different. It is almost as if he is determined to be confrontational, with swingeing cuts in budgets and numbers and a pay freeze. There have been critical speeches about police performance, culminating in the unseemly and very public spat about the initial reaction to the recent urban riots. Not to mention the blame game of the phone tapping scandal. Read the full story
Posted in Civil Law, Civil Liberties, Criminal Justice
Posted on 15 July 2011.
The phone-hacking scandal started out as a story affecting the rich and the famous, and therefore of little relevance to the general public. Then came the revelations that Milly Dowler’s phone had been hacked, as had the phones of the relatives of war casualties, the murdered Soham girls and 7/7casualties. Suddenly Read the full story
Posted in Civil Liberties
Posted on 24 June 2011.
Twelve months ago in the Rose Garden we were promised a coalition government guided by progressive values and reason. Justice secretary Ken Clarke seemed to have been so guided, with a green paper setting out a rehabilitative revolution in penal reform, driven by the prohibitive human and financial cost of the current regime. Read the full story
Posted in Law Updates, Legal Aid