The Herald reports:
A decade after he recommended New Zealand set up an independent commission to investigate claims of miscarriages of justice, Sir Thomas Thorp says the case is even stronger.
Thorp conducted a review in 2003-2004 comparing New Zealand’s system of dealing with claimed miscarriages of justice with those in Scotland and England and published his findings in 2006, recommending New Zealand followed suit. Based on the experience of those countries, he estimated there were likely to be at least 20 innocent people in jail here.
Thorp, who spent 31 years as a Crown prosecutor before serving for 17 years as a High Court judge, told the Herald that he had looked at the Scottish and New Zealand criminal justice systems again in 2010 and concluded that “the Scottish procedures have succeeded in identifying and correcting many times as many miscarriages as we do”. On average referrals by the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission had resulted in four wrongful convictions being corrected each year, compared to New Zealand’s rate of one every two years under the Royal Prerogative of Mercy system. Differences between the two countries’ criminal justice systems largely cancelled each other out.
I think there is much merit in having an Independent Commission to investigate alleged miscarriages of justice.Tags: Justice