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Erol Incedal: The trial we couldn't report

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posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 12:54 PM
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I'm not sure exactly which Forum this belongs in so Mods please move it if there is a better fit.

The trial of Erol Incedal has been described as

the most secret prosecution since World War Two
and until reading this report on the BBC News website I was completely unaware of it.

www.bbc.co.uk...

In October 2013 Incedal was arrested and subsequently prosecuted on terrorism related charges.
Sadly there's nothing too unusual about that.
But what is unusual is the reporting, or rather the restrictions placed on the reporting, of the two trials that followed.

The basic details surrounding the charges are known; he was arrested for speeding, terrorist related material was found and;

In the brief public opening of the trial, prosecutor Richard Whittam QC alleged Incedal had been considering a range of options for a terrorist attack, including against an "individual of significance" or, perhaps, a gun attack on the streets, similar to that in Mumbai in 2008.


The jury in the first trial failed to reach a verdict and a second trial was deemed necessary.

During this second trial 68 hours of evidence was given.
Of that only 10 hours was in open and public court.
28 hours of evidence was presented in front of 'accredited' reporters whose notebooks were taken away from then at the end of each session by a counter-terrorism police officer and locked away in a metal safe. The 'accredited' reporters are banned from discussing details of the trial with anyone.
30 hours of evidence was given in front of the judge, lawyers and jury only.

Even the circumstances surrounding his initial arrest and questioning seem somewhat mirky and mysterious.
Apparently questioning was 'suspended' as Incedal had passed over a 'handwritten statement' that police needed time to 'digest.'
Exactly what was in this statement has never been revealed.

The jury on the second trial found Incedal innocent of the most severe charges but guilty of the lesser charges.

There are other aspects relating to Incedal that I personally find both strange and suspicious.
His father was member of the Kurdish Communist Party and his elder sister was a Kurdish separatist who was killed in action.
His mother was a Syrian Alawite - Shia Twelvers.
Both the Kurds and the Alawites are fierce opponents of IS yet we are led to believe that Incedal expressed support for IS and was even trying to get the support of Abu Hamza's sons.
Something doesn't fit quite right with all of that.

Apart from that I find it disturbing that a trial can be conducted under such circumstances in todays alleged transparent society.
I fully understand that national security can, and should trump the publics right to know but this whole episode sits uneasy with me and could be the prelude to more trials being held in such secret and clandestine fashion.

Here are some other takes on the affair.
www.theguardian.com...
www.independent.co.uk... ir-10136285.html
en.wikipedia.org...




posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:02 PM
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a reply to: Freeborn

Ask some of the former detainees at Guantamo about trial & prosecution, in fact I recently heard that at least 1 guy has been there for 13 years and still waiting for his ''charges''



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:07 PM
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Unfortunately 'Closed courts' came about due to 'The war on terror'.

I don't believe they should exist, but our Government deem them necessary, so....

www.liberty-human-rights.org.uk...



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:10 PM
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a reply to: Freeborn

So what was the point of having these "accredited reporters" present if they could't report anything?



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:23 PM
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originally posted by: Zcustosmorum
a reply to: Freeborn

Ask some of the former detainees at Guantamo about trial & prosecution, in fact I recently heard that at least 1 guy has been there for 13 years and still waiting for his ''charges''


Oh those poor little chaps in Guantanamo who are so innocent and were only detained while doing a little bit of fighting in Afghanistan and killing Western soldiers. These scumbags deserve to be kept in detention.

Anyway, back on topic - having read the links, it does seem odd that this trial was kept so secret. Some of the journalists who were present seem to think that the details kept confidential were not even particularly important but obviously there was a good reason for all the secrecy.



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:23 PM
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a reply to: Cobaltic1978

I understand that at times national security should sometimes require certain details surrounding some prosecutions taking place in private but this whole trial and its details seems shrouded in mystery with no clear reason why it should be so.
And it seems the legal restrictions placed on those reporting on the case came on instruction from the highest echelons of UK Judiciary etc.

UK Law is all about legal precedent.
Could this be used to justify more secret trials and further restrictions on reporting?

What is so important and damning about this particular case that it should warrant a level of secrecy not seen since WWII?



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:27 PM
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originally posted by: Cobaltic1978
Unfortunately 'Closed courts' came about due to 'The war on terror'.

I don't believe they should exist, but our Government deem them necessary, so....

www.liberty-human-rights.org.uk...


FISA has been around since well before 9/11 happened.

I don't think every Tom Dick and Harry should be sent to a closed court, but when evidence that reveals sources and methods and identities of clandestine operatives, etc, I have no problem with a closed court at all. I don't think the Washington Post needs to know the names of undercover/NOC operators or agents working in other countries.
edit on 26-3-2015 by Shamrock6 because: typo



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:30 PM
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a reply to: iskander683

How do you know they are guilty or innocent? You can't because they haven't been to trial. We have laws against that,that the government decided to go around with the Patriot act.Which in itself is an illegal document.We don't know how or where they were arrested,we don't know what they were or were not doing,nothing.We know nothing since they haven't been charged and/or had a trial.Snap judgements make for bad decisions.



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:30 PM
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originally posted by: Freeborn
a reply to: Cobaltic1978

I understand that at times national security should sometimes require certain details surrounding some prosecutions taking place in private but this whole trial and its details seems shrouded in mystery with no clear reason why it should be so.
And it seems the legal restrictions placed on those reporting on the case came on instruction from the highest echelons of UK Judiciary etc.

UK Law is all about legal precedent.
Could this be used to justify more secret trials and further restrictions on reporting?

What is so important and damning about this particular case that it should warrant a level of secrecy not seen since WWII?



That's probably a question we will never receive an answer to, I guess. It may relate to the evidence being put forward, but it does make you wonder.

The thing is, I can now see these trials becoming more and more prevelant. At least there was a jury. When this was first being explored, it was suggested the trials would be behind closed doors, with the verdict being delivered by the judge and not a panel of peers.



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:32 PM
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a reply to: Autorico



So what was the point of having these "accredited reporters" present if they could't report anything?


I have absolutely no idea.

Apparently these 'accredited reporters' were instructed to delete whole sections of their notes as well.

And what qualifications are / were required for someone to attain 'accredited' status?

All of these 'accredited reporters' seem to be 'respected journalists' who fully understand the legal process. That they are expressing such concerns over the conduct of this trial, secrecy surrounding it and restrictions placed upon the reporting of it only goes to show how serious this may be.



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:32 PM
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a reply to: Shamrock6

We're talking about the judicial system in the U.K. You know, the judicial system that was the blueprint for many countries judicial systems and was guaranteed under Magna Carta.
edit on 26/3/15 by Cobaltic1978 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:33 PM
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a reply to: Dimithae

I don't personally know but it doesn't matter whether I know myself or not. They were at it in Afghanistan and were caught. Therefore, people better than myself know that they are dangerous and need to be detained.



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:34 PM
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a reply to: Freeborn

I can see withholding names of agents from the government and all,but since he wasn't a government agent,the rest of the trial should be open at least to the press,with the understanding that no names be released. Now if the government has something to hide.......well then of course they would want a closed trial.No sense in letting the peons know what they are up too eh?



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:39 PM
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originally posted by: iskander683
a reply to: Dimithae

I don't personally know but it doesn't matter whether I know myself or not. They were at it in Afghanistan and were caught. Therefore, people better than myself know that they are dangerous and need to be detained.




Really?

Then it should be straightforward to bring them to trial.

Apparently the guy in question has already confessed, thanks to 'Water boarding', so why hasn't there been a trial?

Probably because the evidence is flimsy at best and would not hold in a court of law. But hey, the Government say he's a bad man, so it must be true.

en.m.wikipedia.org...



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:40 PM
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originally posted by: iskander683


Oh those poor little chaps in Guantanamo who are so innocent and were only detained while doing a little bit of fighting in Afghanistan and killing Western soldiers. These scumbags deserve to be kept in detention.




Then give them a #ing trial then.



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:42 PM
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originally posted by: iskander683
They were at it in Afghanistan and were caught. Therefore, people better than myself know that they are dangerous and need to be detained.




what if those people one day decide you are dangerous and need to be detained?
edit on 26-3-2015 by crazyewok because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:43 PM
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a reply to: Cobaltic1978



The thing is, I can now see these trials becoming more and more prevelant.


Its certainly something we must guard against.

Of all the terrorists that have been tried here in the UK this is the case that has been enshrouded in the most secrecy - there has to be a reason for it.....and I don't think its too much of a stretch to think that is the reason.



At least there was a jury.


But with so much secrecy surrounding the case how can we have any faith in the jury selection process?

Perhaps, the answer to that is that they found him innocent of the most serious charges.....but maybe that's all part of the end game?



When this was first being explored, it was suggested the trials would be behind closed doors, with the verdict being delivered by the judge and not a panel of peers.


How far away from that are we?



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:43 PM
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originally posted by: iskander683

originally posted by: Zcustosmorum
a reply to: Freeborn

Ask some of the former detainees at Guantamo about trial & prosecution, in fact I recently heard that at least 1 guy has been there for 13 years and still waiting for his ''charges''


Oh those poor little chaps in Guantanamo who are so innocent and were only detained while doing a little bit of fighting in Afghanistan and killing Western soldiers. These scumbags deserve to be kept in detention.

Anyway, back on topic - having read the links, it does seem odd that this trial was kept so secret. Some of the journalists who were present seem to think that the details kept confidential were not even particularly important but obviously there was a good reason for all the secrecy.



Not true, most were accused of having links to groups and subsequently released without charge, after years of detainment.



I don't personally know but it doesn't matter whether I know myself or not.


No, you don't know so it's best in times like that to not say anything, or else you just look foolish



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 01:45 PM
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originally posted by: crazyewok

originally posted by: iskander683
They were at it in Afghanistan and were caught. Therefore, people better than myself know that they are dangerous and need to be detained.




what if those people one day decide you are angerous and need to be detained?


They are better than them, so they would probably just accept their fate.



posted on Mar, 26 2015 @ 02:53 PM
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a reply to: Cobaltic1978

Okay. So ignore the FISA remark. The rest still stands.

Thanks



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