UK murderers could get hundreds of years in jail to appease human rights judges


Blackleaf
+3
#1  Top Rated Post
British ministers are looking at a change in the sentencing rules to get around a ban imposed by the meddling European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on prisoners in the UK being jailed for the rest of their lives.

England & Wales is one of just two places in Europe - the Netherlands being the other one - which hands out whole life tariffs to some prisoners, meaning they are imprisoned for the rest of their natural lives, with no chance of parole. Whole life tariffs are a direct replacement for the death penalty.

But some British criminals who are currently serving whole life tariffs - such as the killer Jeremy Bamber - have appealed to the ECHR that their sentences breach their human rights. The ECHR agrees with them and has told the UK that it must stop jailing prisoners for the rest of their lives.

The British Government is against stopping whole life tariffs so, in a clever move to get round it, parliament is looking at introducing sentences lasting hundreds of years instead. Such sentences will still be almost exactly the same as whole life tariffs - prisoners will still be sentenced to spend the rest of their natural lives in prison - except they could still be potentially eligible to have their sentence reviewed and reduced, meeting ECHR guidelines.

The judge presiding over the trial of Lee Rigby's murderers wants to sentence Adebolajo and Adebowale to spend the rest of their lives in prison, but has had to postpone sentencing until later this month whilst the row continues between Britain and the ECHR.

Within the UK, England & Wales alone has more people serving life sentences - 13,000 - than all other European countries put together. The UK also has Europe's biggest prison population.

Murderers could get hundreds of years in jail to get round European Court ban

Murderers and other offenders convicted of very serious crimes could be given US-style jail sentences lasting hundreds of years to get round a ban by European human rights judges, The Telegraph can disclose


Mark Bridger, who was sentenced to spend the rest of his life in prison in May 2013 for murdering schoolgirl April Jones




By Christopher Hope, Senior Political Correspondent
02 Jan 2014
The Telegraph


Murderers and other serious criminals could be given US-style jail sentences lasting hundreds of years to get round a European human rights ban on whole-life terms, The Telegraph can disclose.

Ministers are considering a change in sentencing rules to allow judges to rule that offenders should spend decades and even hundreds of years in jail.

The plan is part of the UK Government’s ongoing confrontation with the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

The proposed change to sentencing comes as Conservative ministers prepare to publish the party’s proposals to overhaul the UK’s human rights laws.

They will suggest reforms to ensure Britain’s Supreme Court is the final arbiter on human right cases, not the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.


The Conservatives want to ensure that Britain’s Supreme Court is the final arbiter on human right cases in Britain, not the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.


Current English law allows judges to impose “whole life” tariffs, effectively sentencing a criminal to die in jail.

However, the Strasbourg court said last year that such sentences are a breach of the European Convention on Human Rights, because there was no possibility of a "right to review".

The court ruling means at least one multiple murderer has avoided a whole-life sentence.

The Government is considering its response to the ruling on whole life tariffs.

The Telegraph can disclose that one of the options underconsideration by ministers is to allow judges to jail criminals for hundreds of years.


Britain has Europe's highest prison population and has more prisoners serving life sentences than the rest of Europe put together

The effect of such terms would generally be the same as a whole-life term. Crucially, however, a British criminal sentenced to, say, 100 years in jail, could still be potentially eligible to have their sentence reviewed and reduced.

Very long sentences are often imposed in several US states as an alternative to the death penalty. Ariel Castro, who kidnapped three women in Ohio, was last year sentenced to 1,000 years in jail. He later committed suicide.

There are currently 49 criminals serving whole life terms in the prison system of England and Wales.

One of them is Mark Bridger, 47 was sentenced to life in prison in May of murdering Welsh schoolgirl April Jones. He lodged an appeal in December against his whole life term.

However, another killer escaped such a sentence because of the ECHR ruling against whole-life terms.

Ian McLoughlin, 55, was told he must serve a minimum of 40 years, after he admitted murdering Graham Buck, 66, in Hertfordshire in July, when he was on day release from a murder sentence. Dominic Grieve, the Attorney General, is due to appeal against that sentence.

Lawyers at the Ministry of Justice are now looking at whether the law needs to be changed to allow judges to hand down US-style sentences to serious offenders.

Another option is for ministers to ask the Sentencing Council to draw up a definitive framework for how the system will operate.

A Government source told The Telegraph: “The European Court of Human Rights seems to making decisions a million miles away from what the vast majority of the public think.

“They don’t want there to be any possibility of the most horrible of criminals walking the streets again, and this plan could be a way to make sure that doesn't happen.”

Limiting the influence of the Strasbourg court on British life is a key Conservative ambition, and reforms will be proposed in the party’s election manifesto in 2015.

The reforms have been drawn up by a committee, chaired by Damian Green MP, a minister in the Home Office.

The Tories believe they can detoxify the idea of human rights by stopping the Strasbourg from ruling on cases and creating new legal precedents which British courts have to follow.

Other members of the review panel include Lord Howard of Lympne, the former Home secretary, Dominic Raab MP, Charlie Elphicke MP, a specialist QC and a law professor.

The proposals are based on a Private Members’ Bill proposed by Mr Elphicke in the House of Commons in March last year.

The full document – which runs to 20 pages, setting out the plans will be published in a few weeks – is understood to have been sent to David Cameron, the Prime Minister.

A source said the review was “pithy, to-the-point and problem-solving”.

The principles of the European Convention will be written into the new Bill of Rights. A passage in the 1998 Human Rights Act which requires minsters to have regard to the European Court of Human Rights will be dropped.

The changes would allow Britain to remain a signatory to the European Convention, but would mean that the Supreme Court will be the final arbiter of complex human rights cases, not the ECHR.

In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Mr Green said: “British laws must be made in Britain. I want to restore the respectability of human rights.

"I think it is absurd and damaging that the phrase human rights has become a ‘boo’ phrase.

“It is a sign of system that has gone horribly wrong that a phrase that should be motherhood and apple pie has now gone as badly wrong as health and safety.”

He signalled that the Conservatives wanted to be seen as defenders, not repeated critics, of human rights law.

Mr Green said: “There is absolutely a Conservative case for human rights – they are the base of any democratic free society that any Conservative wants to see.

“This is not a technical or legal issue – this is a really big moral issue that we have got to restore human rights to their appropriate non-controversial place.

“The whole political spectrum in this country believes in human rights. This should not be a political issue in a country like Britain.”


Murderers could get hundreds of years in jail to get round European Court ban - Telegraph
Last edited by Blackleaf; Jan 2nd, 2014 at 08:23 AM..
 
Retired_Can_Soldier
+3
#2
Life should mean life, but not without an appeal process. The death penalty should be done away with globally.
 
The Old Medic
#3
The ONLY reason to do away with the Death Penalty is because in most cases in industrialized countries, it has simply become too expensive to use it. Endless appeals, courts rewriting laws, bleeding hearts, etc. have made this process far too expensive, and too remote from the crime, to make it feasible.

Personally, I would favor a program that requires ALL possible reasons for an appeal to be filed within 30 days of a sentence being handed down. The Appeals Courts MUST rule on those things within 60 days of receiving the appeal. Once the appeals have failed, the ONLY reason for an appeal or clemency would be absolute proof of innocence.

Then, let the death penalty be administered in an unexcpected manner. Just take the prisone out fpr exercise, etc, and shoot him in the back of the head. Then, harvest all of his useable organs, and bury the rest.

At least that way, murderers would actually serve a useful purpose!
 
taxslave
#4
HEy I know. Just put them on ships to Australia. Oh yeah can't do that anymore. Australia isn't taking in refugees anymore. Could put them on a ship to Belgium though and let them all claim refugee status somewhere else in the EU.
 
Retired_Can_Soldier
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by The Old MedicView Post


Personally, I would favor a program that requires ALL possible reasons for an appeal to be filed within 30 days of a sentence being handed down. The Appeals Courts MUST rule on those things within 60 days of receiving the appeal. Once the appeals have failed, the ONLY reason for an appeal or clemency would be absolute proof of innocence.

Man's rape conviction overturned after DNA testing : Wsj

DNA evidence clears Texas man convicted in '81 stabbing death | Fox News

DC Man’s Murder Conviction Overturned Yesterday by DNA Test Results, Yet Prosecutors Stop Short of Declaring Him Innocent… | Wrongful Convictions Blog

I could put over 100 links but I'll just finish with three cases I know of.

Steven Murray Truscott (born January 18, 1945 in Vancouver, British Columbia) is a Canadian man who was sentenced to death in 1959, when he was a 14-year old student, for the murder of classmate Lynne Harper. His death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. He continued to maintain his innocence until 2007, when his conviction was declared a miscarriage of justice and he was formally acquitted of the crime.
Truscott was scheduled to be hanged on December 8, 1959; however, a temporary reprieve on November 20, 1959 postponed his execution to February 16, 1960 to allow for an appeal. On January 22, 1960, his death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. He was released on parole on October 21, 1969 and his parole restrictions were lifted on November 12, 1974.
On November 29, 2001, Truscott filed a section 690 (replaced by sections 696.1 to 696.6) Criminal Code application for a review of his 1959 murder conviction. Hearings in a review of the Truscott case were heard at the Ontario Court of Appeal.
On August 28, 2007, after review of nearly 250 fresh pieces of evidence, the court declared that Truscott's conviction had been a miscarriage of justice. As he was not declared factually innocent, a new trial could have been ordered, but this was a practical impossibility given the passage of time. Accordingly, the court acquitted Truscott of the murder.[1][2]
On July 7, 2008, the government of Ontario awarded him $6.5 million in compensation.[3]


In January 1969, 16-year-old Milgaard and his friends Ron Wilson and Nichol John took a trip across Canadian roads that included some drugs. Wilson later testified against Milgaard, alleging he had stolen a flashlight from a grain elevator outside Aylesbury, Saskatchewan.
While the friends were in Saskatoon, a 20-year-old nursing student, Gail Miller, was found dead on a snowbank. At the time Milgaard and his friends were picking up their friend Albert Cadrain, whose family was renting out their basement to Larry Fisher.
Tipped off by Cadrain, who admitted he was mostly interested in the $2000 reward for information, British Columbia police arrested Milgaard in May 1969 and sent him back to Saskatchewan, where he was charged with Miller's murder. Cadrain testified he had seen Milgaard return the night of Miller's murder in blood-stained clothing.
Wilson and John were also called to testify against Milgaard. They had told police they had been with him the entire day and that they believed him to be innocent but changed their stories for the court. Wilson later recanted his testimony, saying he had been told he was under suspicion and wanted to alleviate the pressure on himself.
Milgaard was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in on January 31, 1970, exactly a year after Miller's murder. He was 17 years old. Twenty-three years later he was exonerated.
Milgaard wrote of the hardships he faced in jail, especially the difficulty of having his case reviewed, in his foreword to Gary Botting's book Wrongful Conviction in Canadian Law (Toronto: LexisNexis, 2010).
Review and release

Milgaard appealed his conviction several times but was blocked both by bureaucracy and by a justice system unreceptive to those unwilling to admit their guilt. His formal application was completed in 1988 but was not considered until 1991 after Liberal MP Lloyd Axworthy addressed Parliament: "...I wish to speak of a travesty of justice. I speak of the plight of David Milgaard who has spent the last 21 years of his life in prison for a crime he did not commit. Yet for the last two years, the Department of Justice has been sitting on an application to reopen his case. But rather than review these conclusive reports, rather than appreciate the agony and trauma of the Milgaard family, the Minister of Justice refuses to act."
Parliament acted, and rejected Milgaard's application for a conviction review. In her 1996 autobiography Time and Chance, former prime minister (then justice minister) Kim Campbell devotes a chapter to Milgaard. In it she says one of the main reasons for the delay in acting on the request to reopen his case was because Milgaard's lawyers kept adding new documentation to the file, thereby slowing down the start of her review.
Supreme Court of Canada reference and subsequent events

The federal government submitted a reference question to the Supreme Court of Canada, which recommended Milgaard's conviction be set aside. Campbell, as justice minister, ordered that pursuant to section 690 of the Criminal Code a new trial be held on the murder charge against Milgaard. However, the government of Saskatchewan announced it would not do so, instead entering a stay of proceedings in the case against Milgaard, releasing him from prison on April 16, 1992. On July 18, 1997, a DNA laboratory in the United Kingdom released a report confirming that semen samples on the victim's clothing did not originate from Milgaard - to all intents and purposes clearing Milgaard of the crime. The Saskatchewan government then apologized for the wrongful conviction. On July 25, 1997, Larry Fisher was arrested for the murder and rape of Miller. On May 17, 1999, the Saskatchewan government announced that a settlement had been reached with Milgaard, and that he would be paid $C10 million compensation.
On September 30, 2003, the Saskatchewan government announced that a royal commission would investigate Milgaard's wrongful conviction, and on February 20, 2004, Justice Edward P. MacCallum was announced as the commissioner.[1] Douglas Hodson was later appointed as commission counsel.
Milgaard inquiry results

On September 26, 2008, justice minister Don Morgan released the findings of the Milgaard inquiry. Among its recommendations were a call for the federal government to create an independent body to review allegations of wrongful conviction. The report noted that if such a body already existed, Milgaard might have been released from jail years before he was.
Linda Fisher, ex-wife of Larry Fisher, visited the Saskatoon police department in 1980. She told the police that she believed her former husband had likely killed Miller. The Saskatoon police department did not follow up on her statement.[2] The inquiry report released by MacCallum states that “[w]hile MacCallum noted that Milgaard's family members mounted a formidable public awareness campaign, their efforts also created tension and resentment within the police and the Crown's office.”[3] This is seen by some as an excuse for the failure of the Saskatoon police to investigate Larry Fisher.
The real killer

Larry Fisher lived in the neighbourhood where Miller was raped and murdered but at the time he was not seriously considered as a suspect.
Fisher was arrested on July 25, 1997 in Calgary. He was convicted on November 22, 1999, and sentenced to life in prison on January 4, 2000. Due to the laws at the time of the crime, however, he was eligible to apply for parole in 10 years, rather than the current 25, after the sentence. Before this conviction, Fisher had served 23 years for numerous rapes in Winnipeg (Manitoba), Saskatoon and North Battleford (Saskatchewan).
Guy Paul Morin is a Canadian who was wrongly convicted of the October 1984 rape and murder of his nine-year-old next-door neighbour, Christine Jessop of Queensville, Ontario. DNA testing led to a subsequent overturning of this verdict.
Morin was acquitted of murder at his first trial in 1986.[1] The Crown exercised its right to appeal the verdict on the grounds that the trial judge made a fundamental error prejudicing the Crown's right to a fair trial.[2] In 1987 the Court of Appeal ordered a new trial.[3] The retrial was delayed until 1992 by Morin's own appeals based on the Crown's non-disclosure of exculpatory evidence and by other issues, including the double jeopardy rule.[3]
Morin was convicted at his second trial and was sentenced to life imprisonment.[4] Unlike others convicted of murdering children after sexually abusing them, he was kept in the general population throughout his time in prison.[5] Improvements in DNA testing led to a test in 1995 which excluded Morin as the murderer.[6] Morin's appeal of his conviction was allowed (i.e., the conviction was reversed), and a directed verdict of acquittal entered in the appeal.[3]
An inquiry culminating in the Kaufman Report into Morin's case also uncovered evidence of police and prosecutorial misconduct, and of misrepresentation of forensic evidence by the Ontario Centre of Forensic Sciences.[3][7]
Up until his release, he was held at Kingston Penitentiary.[5]
Christine Jessop’s murderer is still unknown.
A grass roots group called The Justice for Guy Paul Morin Committee was created from a small group of concerned citizens including Win Wahrer who is still with AIDWYC the organization formed out of that group. The efforts of the committee involved mass fax campaigns to authorities, candle light vigils, press releases, all demanding that this travesty of justice needed to be looked at as they believed an injustice had occurred. Guy Paul Morin was eventually exonerated on DNA evidence as the science of DNA testing had finally come into being 10 years or so after his original arrest.[citation needed]

 
Machjo
#6
Question: Should a person claim to have killed a soldier as an act of war against the state, and should he be found mentally competent, fully understands what he is saying, and sticks to his story, could he not then be court-martialled?

Just askin'.
 
damngrumpy
+2
#7
I think the punishment must fit the crime. In our society meaning the western world
we are to seek justice not revenge. So its case by case. In fact there are many who
deserve never to see the light of day and shouldn't. The European Union was a
loose term for converging several nations into one the United States of Europe.
The UK knew what they were getting into when they signed on and should never have
made any such commitment to join such a group of misfits.
Having said that I do hope the Brits stick to their guns, it is not inhumane to jail monsters
for life. Those who committed the worst of crimes should be in a little cell without
the comforts they denied to others by killing them.
 
Blackleaf
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by damngrumpyView Post

I think the punishment must fit the crime. In our society meaning the western world
we are to seek justice not revenge. So its case by case. In fact there are many who
deserve never to see the light of day and shouldn't. The European Union was a
loose term for converging several nations into one the United States of Europe.
The UK knew what they were getting into when they signed on and should never have
made any such commitment to join such a group of misfits.
Having said that I do hope the Brits stick to their guns, it is not inhumane to jail monsters
for life. Those who committed the worst of crimes should be in a little cell without
the comforts they denied to others by killing them.

The ECHR has nothing to do with the EU.

UKIP leader Nigel Farage says that he wants Britain to leave the ECHR should it leave the EU. Critics point out to him, though, that you don't have to be in the EU to be a member state of the ECHR. They point out, rightly, that there 28 Member States of the EU, but the ECHR has 47 members totalling 820 million people. I think only three European countries - including Belarus, Europe's only remaining dictatorship - aren't members.

Farage knows this, but rightly says that if you are a Member State of the EU you HAVE to be in the ECHR. Should Britain leave the EU then it can leave the ECHR (which would be nice). That's why he links the EU with the ECHR.

The weird thing is, though, that even though all EU countries are members of the ECHR, the EU itself isn't. It's as if the EU wants to stop ECHR judges looking at its own Human Rights record.

Nigel Farage: Tell the truth, Mr Cameron. Your EU strategy is doomed to fail



In a response to my question of April 2011, Justice Commissioner Reding of the European Commission made it clear that while we are part of the EU, the UK must be a signatory of the ECHR and implement its decisions. In other words, it is impossible to withdraw from the ECHR without first withdrawing from the EU.

Reding stated: “In the negotiations for the accession of new Union members, respect for the Convention and the case law of the European Court of Human Rights is treated as part of the Union acquis. Which means it is obligatory primary law. So when Chris Grayling, the Justice Secretary, says "We need a dramatically curtailed role for the European Court of Human Rights in the UK," or Theresa May hints at promised withdrawal from the ECHR in the next Tory election manifesto, then they are either ignorant of the facts or lying to the people.

Ampers' Rants: Nigel Farage telling us how it is, we cannot leave just the ECHR.


What NEEDS to be done instead of waiting for the EU in/out referendum of 2017 which the Tories have promised to give us if they win the 2015 General Election (a promise which Farage believes the Tories won't keep) is for them to give us the EU in/out referendum NOW, in 2014. It would be a sure 2015 election winner for them and we'll vote to leave the EU.

ECHR Member States



Total ECHR judgements by country 1959-2011


Source: ECHR





Last edited by Blackleaf; Jan 3rd, 2014 at 09:12 AM..
 
Praxius
+1
#9
I love the loophole process going on.

Criminals who have committed such horrible crimes to warrant life imprisonment due to posing a risk to society try and weasel their way out by moaning about their human rights being infringed, thereby possibly loopholing the legal system that put them in prison in order to get out sooner..... So the UK pulls their own loophole to keep them in there as originally intended.

I never saw executions or life imprisonment as a revenge thing. It isn't just about justice.... It's about protecting society and protecting the victims against someone who did something horrible, who most likely showed no remorse and would most likely do something similar again if let out into the public.

What sort of government can people rely on when they just throw people like these back into society knowing that rehabilitation is non-existent & there's nothing else they can do? Basically telling the public, "well, that's it. We can't hold him any longer and will most likely chop some other kids up once he's out.... Good luck to ya."

Yes, common sense does show that mistakes can and do happen where an innocent person could be found guilty, which is why my personal view towards executions is heavily restricted towards cases of unquestionable proof of guilt, the criminal has admitted to their crimes and shows no remorse or willingness to get better.

Otherwise life imprisionment is perfectly fine with the chance to review the situation only when new evidence comes forward that might clear ones name.

I don't see how spending the rest of your life in prision for committing a serious crime goes against human rights. They have food, water, shelter and many various programs in prisions to keep one occupied with activities, education, physical activies. Read a book, take up a hobby, perfect your skills in making shanks.

You took the lives of other humans and/or seriously affected the lives of other humans. Humans who also had human rights... Bitching now about how your rights are being kicked around seems not just insulting, but cheap.
 
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