Not many posts for me recently because of things unfolding in the Lundy and Watson cases, the Tamihere case also being turned inside out. The further one goes inside these cases the uglier look of these Miscarriages of Justice becomes and is deeply troubling, so is the absolute police and Crown Law resistance of acknowledging fault or dealing with their own lawbreakers.
In one respect 2017 was a good year for confidence in New Zealand's ability to deal with Miscarriages of Justice, the door was further opened on them and closer scrutiny applied.
The Lundy appeal was dynamite in my opinion. Jonathan Eaton QC not avoiding the term 'miscarriage of justice', where he addressed the Court of Appeal about a very ugly example of scientific misadventure going wrong aided by junk science. Eventually, and I hope it is this year, the case of Marl Lundy will be finally understood that he is innocent, convicted on science that has only been used once, is not forensic in any context and was administered by quak who has fled the scene long before Mark's appeal. I look forward to an instructive and thoughtful Court of Appeal Judgement in the next few weeks and Mark's release. Failing that, the well oiled defence stepping forward to the Supreme Court and beyond if necessary.
What can anyone say about the Tamihere case, the guts ripped out of it with 8 convictions of perjury brought by a Maximum security prisoner Arthur Taylor who has never met David Tamihere. I hope the response by David himself is constructive, and rapid this year, because no Justice System can have credibility when a principle witness has been shown to have lied even once, let along 8 times. Sadly the Tamihere case shows that police officers corrupted on one case forever damn those they work with for years to come. Readers will know that the 'leader' of the Tamihere inquiry, the late John Hughes, cut his teeth in the Thomas case were evidence was also planted. Police stood by him and he continued on with his methods throughout his police career ,extending a blight that could have stopped if the 'leaders' of the Thomas inquiry had been charged for planting evidence. Arthur Taylor has chipped away at that block and I believe soon we will see private prosecutions against senior police who direct staff to do illegal acts when framing a person police leaders 'know, or believe' are guilty. I hope that will happen sooner rather than later, and that prosecutors who go along with corrupted inquirers are also be made to pay.
The Watson case is highly topical, the one that won't die. At the moment the Government are considering in which way Scott's latest RPOM will be considered. The Minister and the Ministry for Justice are said to be reflecting on the first Watson RPOM outcome, and the significance of 2 reports by the reviewer Kristy McDonald QC tendered with the recommendation to uphold the convictions based on the 'science' yes, that word 'science' again, of the '2-hair' evidence which time has shown is trash. There is nothing which indicates that McDonald QC updated herself on the science that she replied upon to keep Scott in prison. I could say that it is like a person who retains a black and white television when for 20 years people around her have colour TV, and when asked, the owner of the black and white set claims not to have known about the technology. Bad, bad bad. Meanwhile I have heard that there is paperwork abroad that a former Minister of Police and Justice obtained which indicated that Watson may have been framed, but that ex Minister did not act upon it any way. Often people make claims about the 'people at the top' being corrupt in some way out of pure, and mostly unfair speculation, at the moment I can say that does not appear to either unfair or speculation but documented material.
Cheers to the few members and the watchers here. Sorry about the long gaps between posts and all the best for the New Year.