THE LAST DITCH An Englishman returned after twenty years abroad blogs about liberty in Britain
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Charlotte Gores Labour

When is a cover up not a cover up?

De Menezes inquest: officer cleared of staging cover up - Telegraph.

The defining story of the history of New Labour is not the expenses scandal. That has more to do with the impotence of parliament, which New Labour has ruthlessly exploited but did not create. The Devil found work for half of those idle hands (all praise to the half who resisted his wiles).

No, the defining story is that of the death of Jean Charles de Menezes.

Deliberately destroying evidence when on notice that court proceedings are contemplated is, at best,  contempt of court. Fabricating or destroying evidence is one of the actions which may amount to the crime of perverting the course of justice. Anyone involved in killing a man should expect court proceedings, however confidently he may expect to be acquitted. Indeed, a man confident of his innocence might be expected to worry that destroying evidence suggests guilt.

The only criminal trial in the case of Jean Charles has been the ludicrous "health and safety" case against the Met, which I suspect was initiated to allow politicians to remain silent, arguing that the matter was sub judice, for just long enough to pass the limited attention span of journalists and public. Even in contemplation of that trivial case, or an inquest (and there had to be an inquest) however, anyone (let alone a trained policeman) should have known better than to destroy evidence.

But then a Prime Minister should have known better than to shred evidence that a court had ordered to be disclosed too, don't you think? Yet the authorities seem to have no particular action in mind there either. Perhaps he, like "Owen", was "naive?" Had you or I done it, we would have had to defend our behaviour in court. Not Blair. Not "Owen."

Of course we shall never know the truth in either case. We could be forgiven for suspecting however that in modern Britain you may safely pervert the course of justice if you are a member, or under the political protection, of the ruling elite.

"Be you never so high, the law is above you", unless - it seems - the party in power deems otherwise.


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I am a long way away, and have been for many years; and I don't doubt that those closer to events find the reaction to them less perverse than I do. But all the same, what I suppose to be the ubiquitous cynicism of the press, and of much of the public, when scandals of the nature and the magnitude of those we have seen in the last few years become known, seems beyond belief. Is it that journalists in particular are persuaded such things have regularly happened previously and been hushed up? Surely the Mandelson Mortgage, the de Menezes Murder, and goodness knows what else, would in the past usually have led to resignations and disgrace. Is it that we have become so afraid of hypocrisy that we dare not condemn even the most flagitious behaviour? Or is it the result of information overload -- we just are not able to discern the true shape of things through the all the vaguely related news that we are fed at the same time?


You guys sound just like someone I know. He has practically stopped blogging.

He can't understand why people don't pay attention. Considering it affects most everything in their lives.

I am not saying you or he are wrong either.

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Yes, it is rather telling that it's only the details of MPs' expense claims which briefly wakes people up. Tell them about the manipulation and the killing and many just reach for the Doritos.

George Orwell got one thing wrong in "1984": there's no need to rewrite/destroy the previous stories, just keep bombarding people with gradually changing information and they'll remember NOTHING.


You express my own feelings very well. I do not understand why the public is not furious. I suspect that most have simply not followed the story since the original, inaccurate, coverage based on untruths from the Met's press office (that he was inappropriately dressed, acting suspiciously, jumped the ticket barriers etc., etc.) If they didn't storm the HoC after the shooting, they should have done so after the inquest, when it became apparent that the police were suspiciously united in giving the same evidence about Jean Charles' conduct before he was shot, ALL of which was contradicted by ALL independent witnesses. Had another group of colleagues under investigation conspired to give what we may reasonably suspect was false evidence, they would have faced prosecution for perjury and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

In short, this has been a cover-up from start to finish. The public has been completely Goebbelsed and it's horrifying how easy it was to do. If the price of liberty is eternal vigilance, we have proved to our political classes that we are asleep on guard (except when they cheat on their expenses). We will pay a price for that, which will make the cost of financing their property portfolios seem a bargain.

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De Menezes is the thing that finally politicised me. The first time I've been shocked by something that the government(/police) have done. I'm still worried by the level of public disinterest; it seems to me that the day that man was shot the government should have been brought down by members of the public storming the HoC. Still hasn't happened, they are all dulled by drink and/or hypnotised by their Behaviour Control Units (televisions).

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