When is a cover up not a cover up?
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
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.