posted on Aug, 10 2005 @ 12:58 AM
Under pressure from recent events Britain is preparing to enact changes in law in order to bypass the current 14-day limitation on holding without
charge. This change would allow suspected terrorist to be interrogated for longer periods than is customary in order to secure enough information for
new and ongoing cases. Special Judges (Star Chamber) would have the ability to discuss cases and rule on suspects out of the public eye and possibly
off the public record.
The Home Office said it was weighing changing the pretrial process to deal with particularly sensitive terror cases, with the aim of "securing more
prosecutions." Currently, terror suspects can be held for two weeks without charge; after they are charged, police can no longer question them.
Police have asked the government to extend this period to three months.
The anti-terror courts — run by judges with high-level security clearance — would meet behind closed doors to study the merits of the case against
terror suspects, rule on highly sensitive evidence and decide how long the suspect could be held, The Guardian newspaper reported Tuesday, citing
unidentified Home Office officials.
A spokeswoman for the Home Office, who spoke on condition of anonymity because government policy bars her from being quoted by name, confirmed a new
pretrial procedure is under consideration, but couldn't provide any other details.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
As different as the United States and Britains justice systems are, this appears to be a process by which the two systems grow together. Secret
courts and private hearings can be contained to an off-the-record or classified system just as the eventual disposition of the case and suspect at
hand, these persons charged by the secret courts could disappear from the public eye entirely. As is pointed out later in the article the Home Office
can always refuse to comment on any case while Judges make rulings out-of-sight, out-of-mind. I believe it's dangerous trend for Britain to enact as
the definition of 'terrorist suspect' can change drastically from day to day depending on the current requirements of the people in power.
ATS News Story
Added supporting ATS URL
[edit on 10-8-2005 by Chuck Stevenson]