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Blog entry 11th April 2013

Its been a while since my last blog update, but this is due to the difficulty I am having in getting a new solicitor to take on and represent my appeal.

As thirteen years have now passed since my wrongful accusation and conviction many solicitors are deterred by the passage of time. Nor does it help that our government is making legal-aid all but impossible to access. This can be seen by several solicitors stating that they would happily represent my appeal if it was privately funded. It is no surprise that our current government has made accessing true justice yet more dependent on the size of your bank balance.

All I can do is carry on writing to more solicitors firms and hope that one of them will see the truth of my case. It is a very disheartening situation though.

This month I have my annual sentence planning board to look forwards to. At this the prison offender management unit will tell me that unless I admit guilt to a murder that I did not commit I will not be progressed through the prison system, I will not be de-categorised and that there will be no possibility of my being considered for release. This is all strictly illegal, but as the prison will never put anything of this nature in writing they can never be held accountable.

It will be ignored that for 13 years I have never had so much as a verbal warning, let alone an adjudication. It will be ignored that on numerous occasions over the past 13 years I have offered assistance to fellow prisoners and staff alike; including protecting a lone female staff member from injury by breaking up a fight in a prison workshop. It will be ignored that I have done everything possible to work with the prison system to address their wrongly accused areas of 'risk'. Instead I will be told that as I have not completed 'offending behaviour programmes' that have no independent validation of achieving risk reduction, I cannot be considered as having reduced 'risk'. This is a common situation that every wrongly convicted prisoner in the UK has to endure.

What makes this harder to endure is when we see those who are guilty get progressed and released. Especially when a large majority of them lie their way through the offending behaviour programmes, regularly receive warnings and adjudications and haven't changed their behaviours one bit.

Justice for the wrongly convicted does not exist in the British penal system.

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