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MORE SERIOUS IRREGULARITIES AT NORTHERN CONSTABULARY

(January 15, 2009)
Mr MacAskill
 
I refer to previous correspondence regarding the above.
 
I wish to highlight further serious irregularities regarding the investigation of evidence of corruption within the justice system. Copied below is recent correspondence with the Deputy Chief Constable of Northern Constabulary.
 
DDC Sutherland was firstly asked to confirm that the investigation of criminal allegations of corruption within the justice system ( judges, PF, solicitors etc ) by a member of the public are within the remit of Northern Constabulary. He responded by stating "Yes, the full allegations you made and your supporting documentation was reported to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service by way of police report". In response to a request to confirm the current status of the crimal complaint made to Northern Constabulary he goes on to state "Further to answer above, the Area Procurator Fiscal has not instructed any further criminal inquiry nor has he found any conduct that would infer criminal conduct by a police officer". He then states "However, in this case, given the Area Procurator Fiscal's decision, your current avenue for making observations or lodging complaints against named individuals in the criminal justice system, other than police officers, would be through their professional bodies ".The inference from his statements is absolutely clear.
 
The Area Procurator Fiscal, Mr Andrew Laing, made his responsiblities and role in the above matters equally clear in his letter dated 6 January 2009 - " As Area Procurator Fiscal, I am responsible for the investigation of all complaints which allege that a crime may have been committed by a Police Officer in the course of his duty. My decisions are entirely independent of the Police." In an email ( to be forwarded ) dated 12 January 2009 Mr Scott Pattison, Director of Operations at COPFS confirms that Mr Laing's remit was to investigate the complaint against the Police, namely Chief Inspector MacLean. Mr Laing did not investigate allegations of corruption on the part of judges, solicitor's etc as inferred by DCC Sutherland. Indeed Mr Pattison also confirms that "In relation to your allegations of a criminal conspiracy involving various professional and legal persons no formal prosecution report has been received by COPFS from Northern Constabulary " which again appear to contradict DCC Sutherland's position.
 
It would appear the Deputy Chief Constable of Northern Constabulary is being deliberately deceitful regarding the investigation of what is an extremely serious matter. I would also remind you this is Northern Constabulary's second attempt at investigating this complaint, the first also ended with evidence of dishonesty on the part of the investigating officer, which alarmingly, is currently being considered by DCC Sutherland. Clearly the overriding issue is the investigation and consideration of evidence of corruption - there either is evidence of corruption or there is not. It is within the remit of the Police to investigate such allegations and it is quite clear that Northern Constabulary are incapable of carrying out this function. This entire case should be referred to an entirely independent investigating authority as a matter of urgency to maintain public confidence in the justice system. I trust that you will advise as to exactly how this should be done.
 
I look forward to your comments.
 
 
Stuart Hunt

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