Criminal Barrister weekly legal news update date-07-04-2014

Unlawful activities of undercover Police officers

Concerns continue over the apparent “free rein” given to undercover police undercover officer in carrying out unlawful covert operations. In another civil action against the police for damages against the Metropolitan Police the latest claim is in respect of Bob Lambert, an undercover officer who had a sexual relationship with an activist and also fathered a child. There are 8 women who are suing British police officers for similar claims. They allege that they have been emotionally traumatised having discovered that the person they have been having a relationship for many years, had been actively engaged as covert police “plants” in political groups. The numbers of allegations grow with similar actions brought by other women against Mark Jenner, Mark Kennedy ad John Dines. Senior officials argue that the undercover police officers were never permitted to engage into sexual relationships during their duty.

Legal aid protests continue

The Ministry of Justice plans to cut out £215m out of the department’s yearly budget for legal aid met with stiff resistance from both criminal lawyers and solicitors in London and also the Probation Service. Both groups have staged mass walkouts. This protest has been carried for 48 hour, which has taken place for the third time and follows the recent action by criminal barristers.

Fraud: SRA investigations

David Esseks and Peter Watson, two partners of Allen & Overy are facing Solicitors Regulation Authority investigation for potential contempt of court and meeting prosecution witnesses in what is described by their barrister as an “extraordinarily ill advised” meeting in a very hig profile bribery and corruption trial against businessman Victor Dahdaleh.
The firm were representing Dahdaleh in a case brought by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), following allegations of billions dollars bribes to Aluminium Bahrain (Alba) in securing contracts.

The Vatican Fraud

Two suspects for a Three Trillion Euro Fraud are alleged to have approached the guards at gates of Vatican City, convincing that they had an appointment with the bank officials. One of the suspects was of Dutch nationality while other was a US citizen. They allegedly told the guards that ‘the cardinals were expecting them,’ the men were then handed over to the Italian police.

Celebrity Drink Driving

80 year old actress, Barbara Knox, best known for “Rita Tanner” in the television series Coronation Street, has been held for drink driving. She came down to Knutsford Police Station to release her daughter who was breathalysed where the tests came out to be nearly three times the legal limit, there the actress was held at Knutsford Police Station on suspicion that she had driven to police station under the influence of alcohol, she was then arrested.

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