Monday, January 31, 2011

"A revelation that gives hope to Tommy Sheridan"

Bob Bird, Scottish Editor of the News of the World

The Independent has a Piece today, written by Cahal Milmo and Martin Hickman, on the news we linked to yesterday that the News of the World had recovered emails that the court in the Sheridan trial was told by Bob Bird had been "lost." (see Here for our report on that section of Mr Bird's testimony)  The article states; "News International now says Mr Bird unintentionally misled the court, but insists that all the emails sought by the defence were disclosed to it either by the newspaper or the police. Sheridan's legal team suspects that more information should have been disclosed, and plans to launch an appeal in the hope of springing Sheridan from Barlinnie jail, where he has begun a three-Year Jail term"


Whatsy said...

That sounds like a gift to the defence's grounds for appeal to me.

NoW must be feeling a bit down in the dumps today.

Sheridan Trial said...

I;d think they would be really pleased W, the lost mails have been found, good news all round I'd say,


Whatsy said...

You could be right, J.

Imagine their joy when an IT guy burst in with the good news that after pulling out all the stops, those e-mails they thought they had lost had been retrieved after all.

Bonuses all round!

Sheridan Trial said...

Indeed, well done the Mumbai recovery team, I can see promotions raining down on them as the good news filters out.

Mike Giggler said...

Norma Anderson said...

Whatsy and James, I think you've got it all wrong. Far from patting the IT team on the back they will be sacking them! After all, that nice Mr Bird said, in his pre-trial statement: "I'm still trying to discover where they actually are and how you open the things. I've had IT at it for a few weeks now ..." Now their IT team obviously couldn't have known that their emails were stored in the UK and not in Mumbai so leading that nice Mr Bird to mislead the court! But if the IT team didn't know that Mumbai was a red herring they must be about as much use as a chocolate teapot! No, there is nothing else for it! They will have to go!

Anonymous said...

no it does'nt

Paul L said...

Why is the recovery of some NOTW emails a gift to Sheridan? Hardly that much difference?

Anonymous said...

How does a retrial work, can both sides lead new evidence? Such as what was alledged by former sexual partner in yesterday's NOTW.

Sheila Takeabow said...

Can't see how this impacts on the conviction in any way.

Sheila Takeabow

Voice said...

I'd say that depends on what is in the emails Sheila.

Sheila Takeabow said...

Okay, it'll help if the emails say "here's the script for that video you wanted to concoct.

Doubt that, though.

And if the NotW is wanting to conceal things, why's it saying the emails have been found?

Sheila Takeabow

yulefae said...

Just a thought maybe cumberbirch,trolle and the ohers who denied being paid will be caught out in these emails

the weather in cyprus crap but nice brandy

Metaxa 7 star

I always new TS was right when he said Bird was waffling

yulefae said...

Cant wait to see what happens when the crown have to disclose what they failed to at the trial

jim mclean said...

The hand of Rupert is behind this, the tabloids that were once his fortune and entry into the corridors of power are no longer of the same importance. He is now hell bent to make sure his BSkyB bid goes through, and if that means sacrificing the Sun, NoTW and their staff over the hacking,so be it. Murdoch probably hasnt even heard of Sheridan, Solidarity or the SSP.

Sheila Takeabow said...


What. On. Earth. Are. You. Talking. About?

Sheila Takeabow

jim mclean said...

Simple, Rupert Murdoch is having his plans to take full control of BSkyB hampered by the Government due to the conroversy over phone hacking by his employees in the Sun and News of the World newspapers. These newspapers are no longer the money spinners or political force that they once were as the circulation has collapsed. Top News International employees have flown in from the US to help James Murdoch to sort this out and get the TV deal pushed through. Murdoch wants the phone hacking problem dealt with and if the newspapers and staff go down it will be worth it as he extends his stranglehold on the televised media. And if there are any emails that let TS off the hook, he wouldnt care.

Say It Ain't So Joe said...

Yulefae 5.24,
Glad you're having a good time.
I don't think there's been any failure to disclose by the Crown unless you are suggesting that they knew about this. I can't see Alex Prentice committing career suicide by doing that.

If BB's evidence can't be relied on that wouldn't of and in itself knock the tape out.

Jamesie Cotter Esq. Govan Dial-a-Witness said...

Suppose the e mails said: 'Hack TS's phone/s and see what we can find'.

Where does that take an appeal?
What difference does it make, short of showing collusion with prosecution witnesses, to the perjury verdict? How on earth does a phone hack erase the evidence of numerous witnesses to TS trying to involve SSP members in a cover up which would involve them potentially lying to the High Court?
All sorts of people are victims of crime.
Some of them are angels but not all.

The NotW witnesses were not called by the Crown, they were Tommy's witnesses. It was therefore up to the Defence to fully proof them and get whatever exhibits they might be siting on into the open. That is usually done with an application for third party disclosure in a criminal matter.

Was such an application made in the lead up to the trial? If not, why not?
TS was clearly interested in a possible conspiracy involving such communications. He had years, not months, pre-trial to make such an application. Let's see what emerges but I think it will be too little too late for Tommy.

James Doleman said...

Hello Jaimsie, that is I am afraid factually incorrect, all of the News of the world witnesses, except Mr Coulson, were Crown witnesses.

On disclosure there was a long process with a QC being appointed to review all of the documents soured from News International, there were also numerous legal debates during the trial as Mr Sheridan wished to have certain "redacted" documents revealed in full.

Best Regards


Peter said...

I won't go into great detail but whatever is in the "lost" emails the main impact of this latest revelation is that the NOTW LIBEL appeal (that was rocking on it's heels anyway following the Mulcaire revelations REVEALED AFTER the perjury verdict) is now most likely dead in the water.

Simply put (and the legal bods here will confirm it) when you come to the civil courts and the civil appeal courts with demands for money you must come with clean hands yourself.

Can people who describe themselves as "chancers"; whose organisation is being investigated for an alleged widespread criminal conspiracy against thousands of UK citizens; and (according to the Independent) allegedly misleads the criminal courts, show a clean pair of hands?

It is always wise when in a hole to stop digging. I am giving odds that the News International higher ups will now quietly have the NOTW drop their appeal. They could also drag it out until the deadline passes and then have it struck out for them.

We shall see.

The Sheridan appeal against the perjury conviction is more complicated of course but it is certainly a welcome gift for him.

Some, as well as our Tommy, may well be getting used to mince every night soon.

Sheila Takeabow said...


Your suggestion about the NotW appeal being dead seems unlikely, at very best.

Your explanation for why is illogical. The NotW is not going to curt asking for money - it is going to court to prevent them giving any to Tommy Sheridan. It doesn't help the debate - or the pro-Sheridan camp - for you to spread this nonsense.

If you think Tommy Sheridan can be both jailed for committing perjury in a defamation action AND allowed to keep the money awarded in that action, then you are in cloud cuckooland.

Sheila Takeabow

Jamesie Cotter Esq. The Govanment Inspector said...

Apologies, James. I was concentrating on Coulson and the missing Mulcaire who were called by the Defence. Third party disclosure could have been sought there.

In respect of the Prosecution winesses, I am still at a loss as to whether a defence case statement was served. If it was and it sought disclosure of relevant NowT e mails I would have expected the defence to make an application for disclosure if the prosecution refused disclosure. But perhaps it is more likely that they were not told about them or told they were lost on the information superhighway to Mumbai?
It all comes down to relevance. If they are proof that the NowT was out to get TS but do not show collusion to the extent of suborning witnesses to change their testimony, I cannot see they will be of assistance in an appeal when the key evidence concerned TS's actions not anyone else's.

Steve said...

This is pretty revealing about the history of Murdoch & the NOTW:

If you can take a mention of Profumo - showing my age here!

Jo G said...

I'm finding it a bit irritating that some people need to divide others into either pro or anti Sheridan camps.

For what its worth I'm just someone who watched this whole thing unfold with complete astonishment and growing alarm. I'm also quite passionate about having a fair and honest justice system. And not so very long ago many newspaper editors would have been had up for contempt for the sort of coverage we saw during the perjury trial.

The perjury trial has thrown up a number of questions for me. James Doleman logged events during the trial in a manner not done by the mainstream media in Scotland so it has been possible to go over certain testimony only because of James. It makes you wonder who the trained journalists are.

After the libel trial when the perjury investigation was launched I understood that the inquiries were to be balanced and would involve more than the Sheridans. Yet during cross examinations it became obvious that few, if any, of the prosecution witnesses had had the word "perjury" said to them in fresh interviews with Lothian and Borders. I found that intriguing. More intriguing still was the idea of anyone in L&B being on first name terms with one particular prosecution witness, exchanging cosy emails with her, offering to taxi her to and from Glasgow and arriving at her home with coffee and muffins to interview her with, of all people, a journalist present! This is not the sort of balance I want to see in a Scottish justice system. Because it suggests there was no balance there at all. Any reasonable person can be concerned about these things without being pro or anti Sheridan.

Anonymous said...

I cant believe how this amazing blog continues with bizarre references to some sort of conspiracy theory, James good night sad sad sad, the world is f''''d up due to religion, and this seems like a religious belief in a,,,,, cant be bothered trying to think, im out of here good night

Peter said...

Sheila Takeabow,

With respect Sheila, a judgment has benn entered by the Scottish courts in the libel matter in Sheridan's favour.

It is now for the NOTW to present a case at appeal that the libel verdict cannot stand.

If they do not present that case then the verdict remains in place and can simply be enforced by Sheridan.

Sheridan does not need to do anything - the ball is in the NOTW court.

The appeal court allowed the NOTW request for a stay of their libel appeal.

That was to allow the perjury investigation and trial to be concluded.

At the conclusion of the trial the NOTW were cock a hoop and promoting their appeal.

Not so cock a hoop now are they?

If you think that the NOTW have the same basis for their appeal as they had at 23.12.10 then you are mistaken IMO.

Have you not been watching the news? Scandal after scandal.

The reports were that the NOTW wanted the £200,000.00 judgment overturned and also wanted approx. £500,000.00 court costs to be paid to them by Sheridan.

If you think the higher courts will allow an organisaion being investigated for serious and widespread criminality at the highest levels (that also directly related to the Sheridan trial) to receive such a huge windfall then it is you with respect that are in cloud cuckooland.

If the NOTW continue their appeal (which I doubt as it puts them on oath again) the Sheridan side can simply request that the NOTW appeal process be stayed again.

The grounds for that would be that it would be proper to await the outcome of the ongoing Met investigation into phone tapping and the lost emails issue.

The NOTW could hardly object as they made such a request for a stay of their appeal themselves!

If (and I emphasise if) charges are then raised against the NOTW and proven it is a game changer.

There is a principle (well rehearsed in this trial and on this blog) that criminals should not profit from their actions.

What's good for the goose is good for the gander. No?

Sheila Takeabow said...


You are wrong, again. There is no oath taking while judges look at the appeal. They either grant it or they don't. And then Sheridan faces being told he cannot sue again, on the basis - as a convicted liar - he has no reputation to defend.

Pardon me for appearing harsh, but the acres of words you typed during the trial amounted to you being wrong, repeatedly, and on a grand scale.

Sheila Takeabow

Anonymous said...

Sheila Takeabow
'If you think Tommy Sheridan can be both jailed for committing perjury in a defamation action AND allowed to keep the money awarded in that action, then you are in cloud cuckooland.'

Mmm. Not so sure.

How much discretion does the Court of Appeal have when being asked to overturn the decision of a jury in a civil case?

I don't think the issue is as cut and dried as people are assuming.

Anonymous said...

An alternative view of TS:

Steve said...

There might be scope for not awarding costs, given the doubts about the original story.

The rest of the story is history to me.

jim mclean said...

I winder what would have happened if Tommy took the JIH route with a gagging order innstead of suing, and here is a good story.

Whatsy said...

That Johnny McKie article is really pretty cheap.

Comment good enough for Smash Hits, maybe, but not for much else.

Anonymous said...

Peter, with all due respect but I doubt that you have ever being present at a hearing of the Appeal Court in Edinburgh. The NotW Appeal will be decided solely by a panel of 3 judges, no oaths, no jury. Some of us DO KNOW how it work because we have BEEN there!

Anonymous said...

What has always amazed me is how a libel trial that started off being about Mr Sheridan having a 4 year affair with someone ended up with a perjury trial about whether he was in a certain establishment on some unspecified matter. It just says so much about our "twisted" society.

douglas clark said...

James Doleman,

I am interested in the impact that these 'found' emails may have on the credibility of Andy Coulsons' testimony. Would they make a difference from an 'appeal against perjury' point of view or not?

It seemed to me obvious, but I am too simple to be a lawyer, that the perjury case against Mr Sheridan was at least debateable, given the jury split.

Would this have made a difference to the outcome?

I am not a fan of Mr Sheridan's but I do think there is something amiss here.