Archive for January 22nd, 2011

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The presumption of guilt……or innocence. A President’s statement

January 22, 2011

Well dear readers, it has been reported that the Ukrainian President has express his hope that the former Ukrainian Prime Minister will prove her innocence of the charges made against her.

“Yulia Tymoshenko will have a chance to protect herself [in court], and I’m one of those who want this to happen. I would like her to prove that the charges brought against her are false,” the Kommersant-Ukraine newspaper quoted Yanukovych as saying in an interview with CNN International news service”

In the same statement, he also went on to say, that a court ruling cannot be questioned and that this means the correctness of both acquittal and conviction.

“If the court finds her guilty, she will be punished like any other person,” Yanukovych said.

He also recognized the shortcomings of the current judicial system in Ukraine.

“We still have to reform the judicial system in order to fight corruption.”

Totally outrageous that a the person charged must prove their innocence rather than guilt be proved would be the cry from many people……until we are to consider other statements and legal situations in other nations.

One can recall that GWB whilst readying to take Oraq back to a decade in th Stone Age told Saddam Hussian to prove he did not have WMD rather than GWB proving that Iraq did have them.

Anybody owning a car that is caught on speed camera in England is automatically assumed to be the driver and thus guilty and has to prove they were not the driver at the time to avoid the fine and penalty points on their license.  A definite arbitrary case of being assumed guilty and having to prove innocence.

Staying with England, if we consider the Crown Prosecution Service will only allow cases they are 70% or more likely to win even entering the court justice system, the inference alone is that by getting to court you will have to prove your innocence as the Crown prosecutors, and therefore the State, already think you are guilty and have a 70% or more chance of proving it beyond all reasonable doubt…..a fact that probably does not escape the consciousness of any Magistrate, Judge or jury member.

In other words, to even get to court in England, your conviction stands a 70% chance (at least) of occurring and thereby are there to prove your innocence.   A 50/50 chance of conviction does not get to a UK court as the CPS generally do not consider it worth the public expense to get you to court.

Trial by media?  How many times do the media place the accused in a position of proving innocence before even getting to court?

It seems that whilst what has been said is on the face of it quite contrary to “innocent until proven guilty”, a belief that many of us hold true, the way that is has been said in actual fact is not so far removed from the realities we prefer to overlook in many nations.

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