The case of Mark Kennedy, the now desperate ex-police officer who infiltrated eco-protesters raises a number of uncomfortable questions relating to police behaviour generally and specifically the role of an ever more powerful police force within UK society.
As reported in many national newspapers, the police have apparently tried to hide tapes of conversations, dubiously obtained, which would have undermined and ultimately destroyed the prosecution and police case.
Regrettably, it seems that police corruption at the highest level is alive and well in the UK.
TheOpinionSite.org believes that it is ironic indeed that this should be brought into the open by a case involving not terrorists but environmental protesters.
One wonders who authorised the use of the same covert police action used to crack terrorist cells against the protesters and with what political motives in mind.
‘Police Corruption‘ is an ugly thing at the best of times but when it is aimed at those whose only aim is to improve the environment for us all, such malpractice betrays the darker intentions of those in uniform and of their political masters.
The police in the UK theoretically carry out their duties ‘by consent’ and – again theoretically – are subject to the Law like the rest of us. They are governed by various acts created by a parliament that supposedly represents the views of UK citizens.
Theoretically, the police can be challenged in court as well as being held to account by various bodies including the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), the Inspectorate of Constabularies and Parliament’s own Home Affairs Select Committee.
There are supposedly robust legal safeguards against the abuse of the ever increasing power of the police.
For example, if the police want to impose a restrictive order on someone, they must first prove in court that it is necessary to do so and provide evidence to support their claim.
Further, decisions to charge people are made by the Crown Prosecution Service following ‘advice‘ from the investigating officer in the case but the decision is not made by the police themselves.
Finally, in order to regulate ‘undercover’ operations, the Blair government introduced the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000, an abominable piece of legislation, the duplicity of which is matched only by the Sexual Offences Act 2003 which introduced the infamous Indeterminate Sentence for Public Protection (IPP) so rightly berated by many visitors to TheOpinionSite.org.
So, with all these ‘checks and balances’ in place, how would it ever be possible for any corruption to take place within what many, ill-informed citizens still mistakenly believe to be an ‘honest’ police force?
We at TheOpinionSite.org, together with many informed commentators including lawyers, judges, a few politicians and even some policemen believe that corruption is actually built into the system itself.
In fact,they have so much legislation to protect them that it is virtually impossible for the police not to be corrupt when the opportunity to be so arises.
Following are some examples to illustrate what may be to many of our visitors uncomfortable reading:
1. When a complaint is made to the IPCC. The ensuing investigation is mainly carried out by the police themselves. Not very independent after all is it?
2. The Inspectorate of Constabularies is mainly staffed by ex-policemen who are loathed to condemn their own kind.
3. If the police require an Order to impose restrictions on someone, they must apply to a Magistrate’s court and provide suitable evidence. However, under current legislation, in the case of sex offences and violent offences, together with most public order offences, the so called ‘evidence‘ need be no more than the ‘expressedconcern‘ of a senior policeman. No hard evidence is actually necessary in such cases.
4. The orders obtained by the police are Civil Orders. As a result, despite the fact that they generally have a criminal penalty of 5 years and are valid for a minimum of 5 years regardless of circumstances, these orders are imposed based on ‘the balance of probabilities‘ rather than the more reliable ‘beyond all reasonable doubt‘ criteria. This enables the police to obtain almost any court order they want just by asking for it.
5.The old name for ‘Magistrates Courts‘ used to be ‘Police Courts‘ and that is what they still are, despite a change of name. Last year, according to judicial watchdogs, 96% of all orders requested by the police were granted – all of those in magistrates courts.
6.The job of the Crown Prosecution Service is to secure successful prosecutions. They are not concerned with guilt or innocence and such concerns are not part of their brief. They don’t care who is convicted, so long as a successful conviction results.
Given all the above, we perhaps should not be surprised when sanctimonious CPS and police spokesmen who after a successful conviction stand on the steps of Crown Courts proclaiming that ‘justice has been done‘.
However, when the same, often doubtful convictions are subsequently overturned on appeal, the alleged offender’s life having already been ruined, his family, job and home lost and the true perpetrator of the crime still at large, those same CPS and police spokesmen are nowhere to be seen.
Finally, the objective of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 was not, as officially maintained, to regulate policing; it was instead to safeguard covert policing from challenges under the Human Rights Act 1998, which came into effect at the same time.
RIPA does not prevent the police from carrying out any activity they wish; rather, the objective was that covert policing would be legal if internally authorised.
Basically, as long as a senior police officer says that something can be done to further an investigation, the police can do anything they want, whether it is lawful or not.
The inadequacy of RIPA’s oversight procedures are compounded by the private status of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) which is, unbelievably, not an official, government regulated authority but is in fact a Private Limited Company.
It and its Chief Constable members are therefore completely unaccountable, not subject to Freedom of Information legislation and not under ministerial control. Nor are they subject to challenges under the Human Rights Act as they are not part of a public authority – even though they run the police forces throughout the country.
The Coalition have promised to redress this appalling abuse of power but as with the review of the Sex Offenders Register, a review of the treatment of children in custody and the voting rights of prisoners, they seem to be in no hurry to do so.
There is a further problem which is perhaps the biggest abuse of all and that concerns the courts, judges and their unwillingness to go up against the police.
Ever since Lord Denning refused the first appeal of the Birmingham Six, claiming that “To believe the police had lied would be too much for the public to bear”, complaints against the police in courts up and down the land have been turned down.
Judges, sometimes under direction from the Lord Chancellor – who is a member of the Cabinet, have deliberately prevented the progress of perfectly legitimate complaints against the police. What is more, the Legal Services Commission has often withdrawn or refused funding for such cases and has done so almost exclusively for political reasons.
TheOpinionSite.org believes firmly that the police in the UK have too much power, are poorly regulated, can break the law with impunity whenever it is expedient to do so and can overpower the requirements of natural law and the Human Rights Act as a result of RIPA and weak judges.
Policemen do not care who is convicted as long as someone is accountable for a crime; they go after easy convictions (like child sex offenders who are the only group of offenders who are presumed in law to be guilty unless they can somehow prove their innocence) and pervert the course of justice in the process.
They have poor detection levels and rely on people ‘grassing up’ their neighbours; often the informant has a personal axe to grind.
The Home Secretary has the power to ‘advise’ the police on the direction that their operations should take; something rarely admitted in public. As a result, ‘Political Policing’ has become the norm.
The real tragedy of all this is that the people of the UK are largely unaware of what the true situation is, preferring instead to leave it to others to deal with what is becoming a police controlled state.
These citizens should wake up to what is going on before it is too late.
As for those who disagree with TheOpinionSite.org, by all means leave your comment below but meanwhile, remember this:
The people of Germany managed to sleepwalk their way into the most hateful police state of all time. Hitler was elected lawfully, created his legislation lawfully and enacted it lawfully. His police force became the most powerful the world had ever known and did so lawfully – and it all began with a society and situation that is perilously close to that which exists in Britain now.