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Old 17th July 2019, 02:19 AM   #241
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Originally Posted by Tolls View Post
No it suggests no such thing.

It suggests we take the idea of jury neutrality seriously, and realise the trouble that can be caused by external influences polluting a trial.



Unlike, say, the US where trials seem to be treated more as entertainment.



See?

I can spout ignorant bollocks as well...
Also given the shenanigans in jury selection in the USA one would say they also have a problem but choose not to do anything about it...
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Old 17th July 2019, 04:56 AM   #242
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Opinion in the pub is divided but leans slightly (by numbers) towards Tommy being the next Prime Minister.
Have you considered finding a new watering hole?
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Old 17th July 2019, 08:59 AM   #243
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Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
Have you considered finding a new watering hole?
That's an interesting response to a strawpoll. Care to elaborate?
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Old 17th July 2019, 09:31 AM   #244
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Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
Have you considered finding a new watering hole?
I frequent 3 or 4 pubs around the town. It's pretty much pro Brexit and pro Tommy plus Boris for PM in all of them.
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Old 17th July 2019, 09:40 AM   #245
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Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Yup, we totally buy that.
Who's "we"? Local troll farm?
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Old 17th July 2019, 09:47 AM   #246
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
I frequent 3 or 4 pubs around the town. It's pretty much pro Brexit and pro Tommy plus Boris for PM in all of them.
Which town? We might well be decamping back to the UK before long and would like to avoid this town of yours
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Old 17th July 2019, 09:47 AM   #247
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Originally Posted by Archie Gemmill Goal View Post
An inability to differentiate between a bigoted, racist, thuggish, pondscum advocate for making the lives of innocent people worse and a person laughing at a bigoted, racist, thuggish, pondscum advocate for making the lives of innocent people worse getting his comeuppance in an ironic way.
Not all things that feel good are good things. Look at sugar.
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Old 17th July 2019, 09:53 AM   #248
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
Which town? We might well be decamping back to the UK before long and would like to avoid this town of yours
I seem to recall Captain_Swoop is a smoggy.
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Old 17th July 2019, 10:01 AM   #249
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Not all things that feel good are good things. Look at sugar.
Sugar is a good thing, though.
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Old 17th July 2019, 10:07 AM   #250
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
Which town? We might well be decamping back to the UK before long and would like to avoid this town of yours
Any pub in any town. It's pretty much across the board in my experience.
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Old 17th July 2019, 10:10 AM   #251
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Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I seem to recall Captain_Swoop is a smoggy.
No, I live on the edge of the North Yorkshire Moors, not on Teesside.
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Old 17th July 2019, 10:14 AM   #252
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
A universal problem is likely to have a universal rule.
Meanwhile, in the real world, the same kind of problems are tackled in many different and sometimes incredibly dissimilar ways. In fact sometimes people choose to not do something about problems, no matter how obvious and acute they are.

Quote:
When the rule is not universal, but rather specific ("special") to a particular circumstance, it suggests that there is something about that specific circumstance that is problematic.
Historical legal, cultural and political practices, customs and experiences heavily factors in the eventual shape of political structures, legal systems and of how their laws are written and interpreted.

That is more often than not the main reason for why different countries have different laws, not because the actual circumstances are somehow significantly different.
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Old 17th July 2019, 10:32 AM   #253
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Originally Posted by Arcade22 View Post
Meanwhile, in the real world, the same kind of problems are tackled in many different and sometimes incredibly dissimilar ways. In fact sometimes people choose to not do something about problems, no matter how obvious and acute they are.



Historical legal, cultural and political practices, customs and experiences heavily factors in the eventual shape of political structures, legal systems and of how their laws are written and interpreted.

That is more often than not the main reason for why different countries have different laws, not because the actual circumstances are somehow significantly different.
Fair enough.

I still think it's an interesting question, though. If you can't trust jurors to make up their own minds, why entrust them with jury duty at all?

Your reference to historical factors suggests an argument based on tradition and Chesterton's Fence. This is a perfectly cromulent opinion, but also a very conservative one.

On a related note, *is* there an obvious and acute problem with jury pool contamination in the UK? Or I guess, *would there be*, if not for this rule?

Even in the US, the issue of juror contamination comes up. Usually it's handled through the change of venue process, but I'm dubious that this actually solves it in most cases. I think it probably made more sense when news was local, communities were smaller, and separating the jurors from the lynch mob could be difficult.

The US is generally more wary of media blackouts than the UK, I think. I don't think a US judge could prohibit private citizens from talking about publicly available details of a court case. At most, he could sanction someone for making confidential information public. It would be up to the lawyers in the case to argue that the public information had tainted the jury. Remedies for that would be a mistrial and retrial with new jury, or a change of venue.

---

I've long speculated that many institutional differences between the US and the UK have to do with the fact that the UK is an island (more or less), and much more densely populated than the US. So I figure a lot of the "nanny state" type stuff that seems to go on there is actually a form of social "control rod" that has evolved because social stability in the UK depends much more on going along to get along than it does in the US.

So some stuff that Americans are willing to put up with, in the service of individual freedom and with the luxury of more elbow room, UKians crack down on, in the service of maintaining social order on an island.

But that is all just speculation on my part. I'm sure someone will be along shortly with a national chauvinist argument that UKians are just better people, or something. And that would be a fair retort, come to think of it, given how I started this sidebar. Carry on!
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Old 17th July 2019, 10:33 AM   #254
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Weirdly the idea of sequestering juries, putting them up in hotels and keeping them from media input seems to happen much more in the US than it does in the UK (where it is more or less unheard of).

Guess there must be a particular problem with Americans on juries.
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Old 17th July 2019, 10:57 AM   #255
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Originally Posted by Matthew Best View Post
Weirdly the idea of sequestering juries, putting them up in hotels and keeping them from media input seems to happen much more in the US than it does in the UK (where it is more or less unheard of).

Guess there must be a particular problem with Americans on juries.
It suggests that American's can't handle juries.
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Old 17th July 2019, 10:59 AM   #256
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Originally Posted by Matthew Best View Post
Weirdly the idea of sequestering juries, putting them up in hotels and keeping them from media input seems to happen much more in the US than it does in the UK (where it is more or less unheard of).

Guess there must be a particular problem with Americans on juries.
Well, it suggests there might be a problem. Even I wouldn't go so far as to say there must be.

But you're right: Jury sequestration seems to be the more idiomatically "American" approach to the common problem. This is probably my national chauvnism showing, but I think it's probably the better approach. Sequestering the jury is a much more narrow solution than trying to silence literally everyone else.

I suppose in the UK, it's much more likely that citizens will agree to such muzzling, in the service of maintaining collective order. In the US, you'd end up getting a lot more individualistic push-back about such an approach.

I'm not sure either solution really works, though. Information is global, and access to information is ubiquitous. If there's something out there that might "contaminate" the jury, it's probably reasonable to assume it has done so, and that you'll just have to deal with it.
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Old 17th July 2019, 11:41 AM   #257
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Fair enough.

I still think it's an interesting question, though. If you can't trust jurors to make up their own minds, why entrust them with jury duty at all?

Your reference to historical factors suggests an argument based on tradition and Chesterton's Fence. This is a perfectly cromulent opinion, but also a very conservative one.

On a related note, *is* there an obvious and acute problem with jury pool contamination in the UK? Or I guess, *would there be*, if not for this rule?

Even in the US, the issue of juror contamination comes up. Usually it's handled through the change of venue process, but I'm dubious that this actually solves it in most cases. I think it probably made more sense when news was local, communities were smaller, and separating the jurors from the lynch mob could be difficult.

The US is generally more wary of media blackouts than the UK, I think. I don't think a US judge could prohibit private citizens from talking about publicly available details of a court case. At most, he could sanction someone for making confidential information public. It would be up to the lawyers in the case to argue that the public information had tainted the jury. Remedies for that would be a mistrial and retrial with new jury, or a change of venue.

---

I've long speculated that many institutional differences between the US and the UK have to do with the fact that the UK is an island (more or less), and much more densely populated than the US. So I figure a lot of the "nanny state" type stuff that seems to go on there is actually a form of social "control rod" that has evolved because social stability in the UK depends much more on going along to get along than it does in the US.

So some stuff that Americans are willing to put up with, in the service of individual freedom and with the luxury of more elbow room, UKians crack down on, in the service of maintaining social order on an island.

But that is all just speculation on my part. I'm sure someone will be along shortly with a national chauvinist argument that UKians are just better people, or something. And that would be a fair retort, come to think of it, given how I started this sidebar. Carry on!
Court hearings - aside from Family Courts, which are often conducted in secret for privacy towards children - are public in the UK. Any member of the public can walk in and sit in on any hearing going on.

The grooming case is very unusual in that there is not normally a news blackout, although sometimes the names of a co-defendant may be suppressed if he is yet to stand trial. Previous convictions are also kept secret until after the verdict and before sentencing.


In a sense I don't see why the grooming case should have been kept secret. It only encourages the likes of Y-L to agitate.
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Old 17th July 2019, 12:10 PM   #258
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Part of it for me is that the approach of "this information shouldn't have gotten out, and so now everyone has to pretend they don't know it and can't talk about it, and we'll criminalize anyone who doesn't play along" seems weird.

I always thought it was one of the better parts of the American culture that we will absolutely prosecute someone who leaks confidential information, but will also tolerate those who publicize the information once it has been leaked. I'm speaking specifically about espionage and state secrets here, which is not strictly analogous, but I think the principle is informative.
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Old 17th July 2019, 12:17 PM   #259
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I suppose in the UK, it's much more likely that citizens will agree to such muzzling, in the service of maintaining collective order. In the US, you'd end up getting a lot more individualistic push-back about such an approach.
I can't say I've noticed much push-back on the sequestration of juries over there. Perhaps you can point it out to me.
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Old 17th July 2019, 08:39 PM   #260
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Originally Posted by Vixen View Post
Court hearings - aside from Family Courts, which are often conducted in secret for privacy towards children - are public in the UK. Any member of the public can walk in and sit in on any hearing going on.

The grooming case is very unusual in that there is not normally a news blackout, although sometimes the names of a co-defendant may be suppressed if he is yet to stand trial. Previous convictions are also kept secret until after the verdict and before sentencing.


In a sense I don't see why the grooming case should have been kept secret. It only encourages the likes of Y-L to agitate.
The main reason is that it was being split into three parts and the Court didn't want reporting on the earlier cases to influence the juries in the later cases.
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Old 17th July 2019, 08:47 PM   #261
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Well, it suggests there might be a problem. Even I wouldn't go so far as to say there must be.

But you're right: Jury sequestration seems to be the more idiomatically "American" approach to the common problem. This is probably my national chauvnism showing, but I think it's probably the better approach. Sequestering the jury is a much more narrow solution than trying to silence literally everyone else.

I suppose in the UK, it's much more likely that citizens will agree to such muzzling, in the service of maintaining collective order. In the US, you'd end up getting a lot more individualistic push-back about such an approach.

I'm not sure either solution really works, though. Information is global, and access to information is ubiquitous. If there's something out there that might "contaminate" the jury, it's probably reasonable to assume it has done so, and that you'll just have to deal with it.
In most "British Common Law" based systems we have the situation where once an arrest is made that the case is not publicized until trial. This is to prevent the Jury from being biased by information prior to the trial. They are also instructed to avoid reading or watching anything being reported about the case during the trial.

In this specific case it was a little unusual as in that the number of defendants required the case to be split into multiple trials that were going to be dealing with the same issues, evidence, and charges.

It was as if there was one big trial going on. The Order was thus a sort of a of the "We don't report on a Trial before it starts" situation, but where because it had three parts, reporting shouldn't have been done until at least the third trial was underway.

I don't think that this is at all a UK issue either. I think that as much as possible, we all want Jury members who are hearing the evidence and information for the first time in the trial, and are entering the court without any form of preformed opinion on the case because of commentators they may have been listening too.
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Old 18th July 2019, 12:40 AM   #262
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
But you're right: Jury sequestration seems to be the more idiomatically "American" approach to the common problem. This is probably my national chauvnism showing, but I think it's probably the better approach. Sequestering the jury is a much more narrow solution than trying to silence literally everyone else.
Again, this is a specific case, in which the trials were split up, and to prevent one trial from affecting another reporting was restricted.

Sequestration would have had no effect on that.

This has been explained...
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Old 18th July 2019, 03:27 AM   #263
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
What I mean is, a lot of the discussion has been about what kind of criminal/terrorist/hooligan he is, rather than about what kind of crime he's actually committed in this instance.

Is it reasonable for the UK to criminalize what he did here? Who cares! Look at what a horrible person he is!.

Obviously justice in one case cannot depend on how much we dislike what the accused has done in other cases. But that seems to be the focus of the discussion.
People get jailed for contempt of court all the time. Yaxley-Lennon is nothing special in that respect, but his repeated offences do demonstrate what a entitled idiot he is.
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Old 18th July 2019, 03:34 AM   #264
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Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
You mean Stephen Christopher Yaxley-Lennon? He doesn't sound so proletarian.
Well, to he fair to him (Ugh! I feel so dirty...), this is his birth registration from www.freebmd.org.uk ("Carroll" is his mother's maiden name):

Births Dec Qtr 1982
YAXLEY, STEPHEN CHRISTOPHER [CARROLL] LUTON 9 618

The "-Lennon" element, from his step-father, was added later.
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Old 18th July 2019, 03:37 AM   #265
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Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Well, his supporters have been outside of Belmarsh today, which is where the worst enemies of the Crown are held - Islamists and journalists. I've heard it is run by a certain white wizard from down under these days. Are they misinformed? Do you know better?
Probably, given that the average EDL thug is a thick as pig-****.
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Old 18th July 2019, 03:40 AM   #266
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Tommy Robinson jailed for contempt of court is literally the topic of the thread.

Not what a horrible person he is in other ways.

What is included under the heading of contempt of court varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. We can debate whether the UK is right to criminalize what Tommy Robinson has done, without calling into question the entire concept of contempt of court.
You mean what he did twice. I don't know why you're holding a torch for this guy. He was well aware that what he was doing was illegal, and the sheer flagrancy of his repeated offending is what landed him in prison.
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Old 18th July 2019, 03:54 AM   #267
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Maybe the real issue here is that UKians aren't fit to serve on juries.
Massive non sequitur is massive non sequitur....
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Old 18th July 2019, 04:02 AM   #268
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Meh.

I'm going to keep using "UKian" to refer to people, places, and things in the United Kingdoms of England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.
Encompassing three separate legal systems.

Bonus snark: There are only two "Kingdoms" out of those four geographical subdivisions.

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Old 18th July 2019, 04:11 AM   #269
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Presumably people are much the same everywhere. But not every jurisdiction that has jury trials also has this kind of prohibition on reporting. That the UK has a special rule suggests a special problem with UKians.
Or maybe there's a problem with justice in countries that don't have similar rules, but those in those countries can't see it?

Quote:
If you don't trust a UKian juror to filter out Tommy Robinson, why would you trust them to render a sensible verdict at all? Why would you want them to have that responsibility?
That seems to suggest you don't actually understand the rules and why they apply.

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Old 18th July 2019, 07:05 AM   #270
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Originally Posted by Matthew Best View Post
I can't say I've noticed much push-back on the sequestration of juries over there. Perhaps you can point it out to me.
Jury sequestration is a different solution from suppressing the free speech of non jurors.

Disagreement with my conclusions I expect and understand. Disunderstanding of basic premises of the topic... I also expect, actually.
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Old 18th July 2019, 07:09 AM   #271
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Originally Posted by PhantomWolf View Post
In most "British Common Law" based systems we have the situation where once an arrest is made that the case is not publicized until trial. This is to prevent the Jury from being biased by information prior to the trial. They are also instructed to avoid reading or watching anything being reported about the case during the trial.

In this specific case it was a little unusual as in that the number of defendants required the case to be split into multiple trials that were going to be dealing with the same issues, evidence, and charges.

It was as if there was one big trial going on. The Order was thus a sort of a of the "We don't report on a Trial before it starts" situation, but where because it had three parts, reporting shouldn't have been done until at least the third trial was underway.

I don't think that this is at all a UK issue either. I think that as much as possible, we all want Jury members who are hearing the evidence and information for the first time in the trial, and are entering the court without any form of preformed opinion on the case because of commentators they may have been listening too.
The issue is not with the courts or the parties involved not talking. That I understand and agree is reasonable.

The issue is with the courts prohibiting private citizens, not party to the case, from talking about the case.
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Old 18th July 2019, 07:10 AM   #272
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Originally Posted by Tolls View Post
Again, this is a specific case, in which the trials were split up, and to prevent one trial from affecting another reporting was restricted.



Sequestration would have had no effect on that.



This has been explained...
Yep. I agree, sequestration wouldn't have worked here.

Do UKian courts sequester juries in other cases?
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Old 18th July 2019, 07:13 AM   #273
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Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
People get jailed for contempt of court all the time. Yaxley-Lennon is nothing special in that respect, but his repeated offences do demonstrate what a entitled idiot he is.
Yep. We agree that what he did was an offense. My question is, should what he did have been prohibited in the first place?

---

It's too late now, but you seem to be replying to posts as the come, rather than reading on to end of the thread to see where the current discussion is. So we're recovering some of the same ground as yesterday
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Old 18th July 2019, 07:17 AM   #274
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Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
You mean what he did twice. I don't know why you're holding a torch for this guy. He was well aware that what he was doing was illegal, and the sheer flagrancy of his repeated offending is what landed him in prison.
I'm holding a torch for the principle of free speech, and asking if it was right to suppress free speech in this instance.

It doesn't matter to me what kind of a guy he is. Appealing to the guy is a fallacy.
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Old 18th July 2019, 07:18 AM   #275
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Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
Encompassing three separate legal systems.



Bonus snark: There are only two "Kingdoms" out of those four geographical subdivisions.
My copulatory reserves are entirely depleted on this point.
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Old 18th July 2019, 07:19 AM   #276
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Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
Or maybe there's a problem with justice in countries that don't have similar rules, but those in those countries can't see it?







That seems to suggest you don't actually understand the rules and why they apply.
Congratulations! You caught up with the thread!
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Old 18th July 2019, 07:35 AM   #277
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I'm holding a torch for the principle of free speech, and asking if it was right to suppress free speech in this instance.

It's not so much suppressed as delayed for the duration of the trial.
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Old 18th July 2019, 07:58 AM   #278
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Originally Posted by Wudang View Post
It's not so much suppressed as delayed for the duration of the trial.
The way I see it, a delay like this is a temporary suppression, which is still a suppression, and which still needs to be justified as a suppression.

Was this intended to introduce an argument that temporary suppressions of speech are a different kind of suppression of speech, that should follow different rules? Or was your post the argument entire?
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Old 18th July 2019, 08:21 AM   #279
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Was this intended to introduce an argument that temporary suppressions of speech are a different kind of suppression of speech, that should follow different rules? Or was your post the argument entire?
ISTM that temporary suppressions of speech are very different to permanent suppressions, in that they are much easier to justify and can follow much more limited and proportionate rules. For example, if I feel like shouting "Fire!" in a crowded theatre, it seems perfectly reasonable to me that I should be required not to shout it unless either everyone who might panic has already left, or there actually is a fire; but I would consider it unreasonable to be forbidden ever to shout "Fire!"

In Robinson / Yaxley-Lennon's case, there was no suggestion that the details of the case would be permanently suppressed any longer than was required by the procedures of the court to ensure the neutrality of the jury. His aim, therefore, can in my opinion only be seen to be defiance of the court in order to prejudice the trial. He wasn't a noble defender of the principle that the truth should some day be told, because it was already intended that it be told.

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Old 18th July 2019, 08:26 AM   #280
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I think there is a quantitave difference between "you cannot report on that now" and "you cannot report on that at all". In the eyes of UK law a delay to prevent a possible miscarriage of justice requires less justification than a complete suppression.

The example someone gave me was a possible scenario that a news outlet takes some fact or statement from trial 1 and, as often happens, twists that to suit their own agenda. Now the jurors of other trials are being influenced by statements and arguments that are not in evidence and cannot be challenged by the defence or prosecution or ruled inadmissable etc.

There is always a risk of such contamination of course but that doesn't mean we should not try our best.

If you are interested there is a rather good discussion about the tensions between open justice and reporting restrictions here : link.


They part I would say starts at page 5 titled "A structured approach for magistrates and judges".

Quote:
If the court is asked to exclude the media or prevent it from reporting anything, however informally, do not agree to do so without first checking whether the law permits the court to do so. Then consider whether the court ought to do so. Invite submissions from the media or its legal representatives. The prime concern is the interests of justice.
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