Thursday, 31 July 2008

Crime files reviewed under new law

South Australian police are reviewing as many as 10 old criminal cases, as double jeopardy [draconian] law takes effect.

People acquitted of major crimes, such as murder or manslaughter, could now face a second trial.

SA Attorney-General Michael Atkinson says a new trial would only occur where there was new evidence, or where an acquittal was considered tainted or justice had been hampered. [Or where the authorities and corporate media weren't satisfied?]

He said between five and 10 cases were again under scrutiny.

"There are cases now being re-investigated by the police that will be able to be brought to trial by this change in the law, but for obvious reasons I'm not at liberty to tell you what those cases are," he said.


Burrell to appeal again over Whelan murder
The High Court has ordered the New South Wales Court of Criminal Appeal to re-hear an appeal by convicted murderer Bruce Burrell.

Burrell sentenced to life for Whelan murder?
In his defence, his lawyers argued that the prosecution case was based on speculative and intrinsically flawed circumstantial evidence. What's more, Bruce Burrell's lawyers pointed out there wasn't a shred of forensic evidence linking him to the crime. Not a single hair, not even a microscopic trace of Kerry Whelan's DNA was ever found, despite extensive searches of his cars and property. [But the jury's guilty verdict demonstrates that a strong circumstantial case can be sufficient to ensure a conviction?

TRIAL BY MEDIA! or trial by a Jury?
Once a person is charged there should be a media black ban on that case until a jury has found the person either guilty or not guilty. If the media have the power to elect our political parties then they also have the power to find people guilty. Especially people who are being tried over and over again. Now with no double jeopardy rules and majority verdicts in NSW then high profile cases have become susceptible to being tried by the media and not by the jury in my humble opinion.

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