Monday, March 28, 2011

Subversion of Due Process: The Death of Dr. David Kelly Open Letter to Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron

When Lord Hutton reported on 28 January 2004, many said "whitewash”. The Hutton Report was indeed a "whitewash", not so much because Lord Hutton wrongly found the and not the Government responsible for Dr Kelly's "suicide" but much more importantly because Lord Hutton failed adequately to address the cause of death itself and the manner of death. The invocation by Lord Falconer, in his role as Lord Chancellor, of Section 17a of the 1988 Coroners Act to replace the statutory inquest by a non-statutory ad hoc judicial inquiry was highly irregular, as was the Coroner’s decision not to re-open the inquest following Hutton’s report. Not only did Lord Falconer, in his role as Minister for Constitutional Affairs, commission the Hutton Inquiry and determine its very narrow remit but he also decided, in his role as Lord Chancellor, that it would be an adequate replacement for a statutory inquest, when it was clearly no such thing. Given all this meddling with due process of the law it is perhaps not surprising that the death itself was not properly investigated.


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