STOP PRESS – upcoming APPG AGM, House of Commons, 5th February 2019

Next week, the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Miscarriages of Justice, chaired by Barry Sheerman MP (Labour) holds its Annual General Meeting at 5.0-5.30pm, on Tuesday 5th February 2019. The venue is Room Q, Portcullis House, Westminster.

The AGM will be followed by a public panel event 5.30-7pm in the Wilson Room. The speakers confirmed to date are Bob Neill MP, Lucy Powell MP and Lord Garnier.

The APPG’s objectives are to examine the structural problems within the criminal justice system which result in miscarriages of justice, and to provide a forum from which to improve access to justice for those who have been wrongly convicted. When it was founded in December 2017, Sheerman said: “When miscarriages do happen the state has to ensure there are quick and effective mechanisms in place to correct them. Currently those obligations aren’t being met.”

I am afraid that it certainly has its work cut out, given the systemic flaws and failings of Britain’s broken criminal justice system.

As the Centre of Criminal Appeals states:

Miscarriages of justice have truly devastating consequences for those who are subject to them and their loved ones. It is in the interests of innocent defendants, victims of crime and the public at large to ensure everything possible is done to prevent wrongful convictions and ensure injustices are swiftly put right. However, our justice system is currently failing too many innocent people and this needs to change.

A major part of the problem is the level of denial amongst the senior judiciary.

I hope that as many people as possible can attend this important event.  You can obtain tickets from Eventbrite here:

I hope to post later today about the last meeting I attended of this important group  on 9 January 2019, highlighting recent research on the experiences of those who have been subject to wrongful convictions.