20 Jan 2010

The Kangeroo Court of Tory and Media Influence

The decision to reduce Munir Hussain's sentence for GBH is indicative of a regression in politics and law and a worrying announcement.

The BBC has provided shoddy reporting on this;

[the family] were tied up but the businessman escaped and enlisted his brother to help chase the offenders down the street, bringing one of them to the ground.

Let's be a bit more specific please.

The Businessman telephoned his brother which is the equivilant of planning an offence. Forethought means he cannot have acted in the heat of the moment therefore provocation is not a defence.

Forethought and equates to Mens Rea of the crime, therefore he intended to commit the crime.

Enlisting his brother made this a joint enterprise and they are equally liable for the commission of the offence.

Chasing the offender down, in a car.

The BBC does go on to say;

The pair left Salem with a permanent brain injury after hitting him with a cricket bat.

The force of the blow was so hard that it broke the bat into three pieces.

Now, as I blogged previously, this is Grievous Bodily Harm with Intent. Also known as the most serious offence against the person short of attempted murder.

Sentencing guidelines for GBH with Intent recommend a minimum of 3 years.

Therefore 2 years was a reasonable mitigation of an offence which could be considered excessive force in self defence.

However, I would argue that it was a premeditated offence, noted above, with a weapon, and this would usually acquire a 5 year custodial sentence.

If you had avoided a charge of attempted murder, and received a sentence far below the usual guidelines for that offence, you should keep your mouth shut and get out in a year for good behaviour.

The Court of Appeal did attempt to inform us that they were not bending to public or Conservative opinion.

Lord Judge said: "This trial had nothing to do with the right of the householder to defend themselves or their families or their homes.

"The burglary was over and the burglars had gone. No one was in any further danger from them."

So, if the burglary was over, this would imply it is not excessive self defence, and is in fact a joint enterprise of premeditated wounding with intent?

If we do not have a justice system that upholds the law as it stands, and bends to public opinion, we may as well have a court of public shouting aye or nay and remove all of Hansard immediately.

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