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Should ex servicemen be immune from prosecution?

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1 hour ago, Black Brick said:

Where a crime has been committed there should be due process & no one should be immune from prosecution of that crime. Who is to say though that what happened was criminal?
Putting pensioners through the courts though is disgusting.

The answer is to put a time limit on how far back prosecutions can take  place against ex servicemen.  Over 40 years is far too long to go back.

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40 years is far too long for the families, the police officers, the medics, the residents and the majority of the young soldiers, all of whose lives have/were  so affected by the events.

The delay is entirely due to the actions of the Stormont and British Governments in trying to manage a quickly escalating situation- right or wrong.

One of the biggest  "what ifs" of the conflict is: What would have happened if the evidence had been submitted before the Canadian legal system at the time- which all parties trusted 25 years later?

 

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, makapaka said:

I don't think its tricky at all - the timing is irrelevant in terms of whether someone is guilty or not.

 

All that needs to be established is whether a crime took place.

Totally agree.  Service personnel are governed by Rules of Engagement which should clearly define the appropriate response to be taken.  Service personnel are also highly trained, disciplined & consummate professionals, well aware of the rules.  So step outside of said rules, then like the rest of us, they should be subject to the rule of law. 

 

As for the  passing of time?  It's never been an issue when bringing old WWII German soldiers forward to face a court of law. 

Edited by Baron99
Amendments

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6 hours ago, WalkleyIan said:

A number of loyalists and republicans are under investigation as new evidence arises. This false information about amnesties keeps being spread 

 

BRIEFING PAPER
CBP 8352, 19 March 2019
Investigation of Former Armed Forces Personnel who served in Northern Ireland

 

https://researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/CBP-8352

 

Prosecutions of Armed Forces personnel during the Troubles

Any fatalities involving the Armed Forces were investigated by the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) at the time and, in some cases, prosecutions were brought against military personnel.
In most cases those fatalities were a direct result of operations and “centred around the key issue of whether the soldier had the right to open fire in the particular circumstances pertaining at the time”. This resulted in a number of convictions, although in the majority of cases the Director of Public Prosecutions for Northern Ireland directed that there was no case to answer, or the defendants were acquitted at trial.

 

Good Friday Agreement and “On the Runs”

 

The 1998 Good Friday Agreement made no provision for the investigation or prosecution of former members of the Armed Forces, focusing instead upon the early release of prisoners affiliated to
5 Commons Library Briefing, 19 March 2019


paramilitary organisations.

 

There was no amnesty for crimes which had not yet been prosecuted.


From 2000 to 2014, the UK Government operated an administrative scheme by which individuals suspected of terrorism crimes in Northern Ireland could find out whether they were at risk of arrest or prosecution if they returned to the UK. The collapse of a trial in 2014 led to a judge-led review. The report of that review criticised the scheme for systematic failings, but emphasised that it did not constitute an amnesty or immunity from prosecution.

Thanks for clearing this up Ian. My knowledge of NI and the GFA is sketchy, and I only get my information from what I hear on the news, and I probably misinterpreted what I heard.

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2 hours ago, Lockdoctor said:

The answer is to put a time limit on how far back prosecutions can take  place against ex servicemen.  Over 40 years is far too long to go back.

Why? 

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3 hours ago, Lockdoctor said:

The answer is to put a time limit on how far back prosecutions can take  place against ex servicemen.  Over 40 years is far too long to go back.

Why do ex-servicemen, or ex-servicewomen, deserve some special exemption? Should a rape be exempt from prosecution after 40 years if the suspect is ex-forces? I don't see why.

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33 minutes ago, Bargepole23 said:

Why do ex-servicemen, or ex-servicewomen, deserve some special exemption? Should a rape be exempt from prosecution after 40 years if the suspect is ex-forces? I don't see why.

It shouldn’t full stop.

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19 hours ago, Penistone999 said:

Of course ex servicemen should be immune from prosecution. 

Why? What's so special about them?

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11 hours ago, Bargepole23 said:

Why do ex-servicemen, or ex-servicewomen, deserve some special exemption? Should a rape be exempt from prosecution after 40 years if the suspect is ex-forces? I don't see why.

Because the charges relate to when the ex-serviceman was on duty in Northern Ireland serving his country.   In my opinion ex-servicemen should be treated differently if the allegations are related to their work when serving their country.  I think after 10 years has passed then any serving or ex-serviceman should be exempt from prosecution. 

 

The ex-serviceman hasn't been charged with rape and it is a strawman tactic to  use rape in this discussion.

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11 minutes ago, Lockdoctor said:

Because the charges relate to when the ex-serviceman was on duty in Northern Ireland serving his country.   In my opinion ex-servicemen should be treated differently if the allegations are related to their work when serving their country.  I think after 10 years has passed then any serving or ex-serviceman should be exempt from prosecution. 

 

The ex-serviceman hasn't been charged with rape and it is a strawman tactic to  use rape in this discussion.

Crime is crime, nobody should be above the law, armed forces also have rules and laws

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Posted (edited)
45 minutes ago, melthebell said:

Crime is crime, nobody should be above the law, armed forces also have rules and laws

I am not suggesting members of the armed forces or ex-servicemen should be above the law. I am stating 10 years is a long enough period of time to bring about prosecutions against any serving or ex-servicemen who have alleged to have broken any laws or rules while serving their country. We all know the decision to bring charges against ex-servicemen who have served in Northern Ireland is more to do with politics than real justice.

Edited by Lockdoctor

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1 hour ago, Lockdoctor said:

I am not suggesting members of the armed forces or ex-servicemen should be above the law. I am stating 10 years is a long enough period of time to bring about prosecutions against any serving or ex-servicemen who have alleged to have broken any laws or rules while serving their country. We all know the decision to bring charges against ex-servicemen who have served in Northern Ireland is more to do with politics than real justice.

However, many incidents of abuses have been covered up, not investigated properly or are subject to a 'whitewash'. So they've never been held properly accountable.

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