Media April 2023

Refusing Gerry Adams a Pay-Out For Quashed Convictions Was Unlawful

How do we Create Change In Criminal Justice?

Patsy Kelly Murdered by the UDA: Family Hails Vindication of Police Ombudsman Report

Victims and Prisoners Bill: Are we Heading in the Right Direction?

71 Year Old Balck Man Punched by Police Given Green Light to Challenge IOPC

Take Power Away From Police and Give it “Back To Communities”

Kevan Thakrar is Suicide Risk After More Than Two Years In Solitary

Bereaved People Speak Out on Failing Investigations of Deaths in Mental Health and Care Settings

William Holden Waterbaorded/Tortured by the British Army

Reform Criminal Records Disclosure - FairChecks

Police Forces Recorded 200,000 Phone Conversations Without Consent

The Bonfire of Agreed Terms - False Allegations in the #MeToo Era

Morgan and Others - Judgment from the UK Supreme Court

Oversight of Police Custody ‘Inadequate to Stop Misconduct’

IRR: Calendar of Racism and Resistance (30 March – 11 April 2023)

HMP Whitemoor: Dirtiest Jail Ever Seen by a Prison Inspector

BBC File on Four Expose Shortcomings of Police Complaints System

CPS to Monitor Race in Joint Enterprise Cases

Minister for Justice
 Dominic Raab Could Face Legal Action for Contempt of Court

MPs Call for Prison Education to be Nationalised

IPP Sentences: UK Supreme Court Invite (Read Order) Parole Board to Review Their Terms of Guidance

Waterboarded by the British Army - £1.3m Compensation

Joshua Ball: Inappropriate Police Restraint Use of a Spithood Unlawful Killing

Three Words a “More Cautionary Approach” Turn Parole on its Head

Institute of Race Relations - Calendar of Racism and Resistance (14 – 28 March 2023)

Police Watchdog Refers Chris Kaba Shooting Officer to CPS

Prison Reform Trust (PRT) Comment: Victims and Prisoners Bill

Information Commissioner to Prioritise FOI Complaints With “Significant Public Interest”


Revolutionary Journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal - 69 years old on Monday 24th April
Mumia Abu-Jamal is a revolutionary journalist, former Black Panther, and political prisoner. After being falsely convicted of the 1981 killing of a police officer, he was sentenced to death. In 2011 this was revised to life without parole – a living death behind the bars of the US incarceration machine. Mumia’s latest appeal has now been rejected. Solidarity is needed now!
Prior to his arrest Mumia was a target of the infamous COINTELPRO, the FBI’s system of covert and illegal projects aimed at destroying the activities of political activists, involving every tactic from phone-tapping to murder. From the outset, the prosecution case against Mumia’s was beset with racism, coercion, and corruption.
Who is Mumia Abu Jamal
As a teenager, Mumia helped form the Philadelphia branch of the Black Panther Party. He became a distinguished young journalist and is known for defending MOVE, the multi-racial, Black-led commune advocating for nature and animal rights. In 1980 Mumia was framed for killing a policeman in a trial drenched in racism. Black jurors were excluded, the judge a known racist, key evidence was withheld and ‘lost’ for decades, witnesses bribed and coerced. Mumia’s real ‘crime’ is to be outspoken, articulate, and a dedicated movement journalist. Mumia has inspired support around the world because he uses his talents and energy to strengthen every movement for justice, including environmental justice.
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William Holden Waterbaorded/Tortured by the British Army - £300,000 Damages

Legal action by Mr. Holden, against the Ministry Of Defence and Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland. In respect of the Mr. Holden’s claim for damages for personal injuries, loss and damage sustained by him arising out of the ill treatment of the plaintiff during the plaintiff’s unlawful detention at Black Mountain Army Base, to include water boarding, hooding and threats to kill, malicious prosecution and misfeasance in public office, I make the following awards:

(a) Waterboarding, hooding and threat to kill £50,000×00
(b) Psychological injury (compensation already received)
(c) Unlawful Detention (compensation already received)
(d) Malicious Prosecution £10,000×00
(e) Misfeasance in Public Office £10,000.00
(f) Aggravated damages £30,000.00
(g) Special Loss £250,000.00

William Holden, spent 17 years in prison after his wrongful conviction for the killing of a British Army private. Mr Holden was arrested approximately a month after the killing of Private Frank Bell, who died on September 20 1972, three days after he was shot by a sniper while on patrol in Ballymurphy. “He spent the next 17 years in Long Kesh. A lot of people would find this quite daunting but he spoke of this part of his life with great fondness, loved the sense of camaraderie, togetherness, empathy, the sharing of a common cause,” Fr Downey said.

Criminal Record Checks/Disclosure

As a society, we must strike a balance between the appropriate highlighting to the public of those who may possess criminal backgrounds and the ability of individuals who have paid their debt to society to rehabilitate back into civil life. Recognise that possessing a criminal record carries much stigma that can hinder individuals' ability to move on from their previous crimes and become productive members of society.

Through the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act 2022, the Government brought forward several measures to update the criminal record framework and reduce the burden placed on past offenders. Through this Act, a rehabilitation period was introduced for some sentences of over four years, meaning that for non-sensitive jobs or activities, offenders would not need to disclose their conviction to their employers. In addition to this, those serving community order and sentences under four years would no longer have to reveal this to most employers. These measures aim to boost employment prospects and create a better path from offending and back into meaningful work.

Prisoners: Employment and Pay

Steve Reed MP: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many (a) male and (b) female prisoners were (i) working in (A) voluntary and (B) paid work placements on release on temporary licence and (ii) paid enhanced wages under the Prisoners Earnings Act 1996 in public sector prisons in the latest period for which data is available.

Damian Hinds MP: Data on release on temporary licence (ROTL) is published quarterly: Offender management statistics quarterly: July to September 2022 - GOV.UK ( The following table shows the number of prisoners who had at least one release on temporary licence (ROTL) to a paid work placement from public prisons in England and Wales between 1 July and 30 September 2022 (latest period available): Paid work Male 1,938 Female 195

Those in paid work placements on ROTL and in receipt of net weekly wages of £20 per week are treated as being in “enhanced wages work” and therefore liable to pay a levy of up to 40% of their earnings, after tax and any court fines or compensation, which helps fund the work of the charity Victim Support. It is not possible, except at disproportionate cost, reliably to determine how many of those in paid work during this period met these criteria, although it is very likely to have been most if not all of them because prisoners in paid work are typically paid at the same rate as employees from the community in the same role for that job.