Craig Murray Defence Fund Launched 752


My Defence Fund has now reached over £75,000 from almost 5,000 donors. I am extremely grateful to each and every one. Work is now proceeding apace with the legal team. If charges are brought against any of the others who have been threatened by Police Scotland or the Crown Office over this case, including the journalist whose laptops and phones were seized by police, the funds will be made available to their defence also.

Original Post (from 24 April, with further update below).

I know of four pro-Independence folk who were last week phoned or visited by Police Scotland and threatened with contempt of court proceedings over social media postings they had made weeks back on the Alex Salmond case. Then on Monday, a Scottish journalist I know had his home raided by five policemen, who confiscated (and still have) all his computers and phones. They said they were from the “Alex Salmond team” and investigating his postings on the Alex Salmond case. He has not to date been charged, and his lawyer is advising him at present to say nothing, so I am not revealing his name.

Then on Tuesday morning, a large Police van full of police pulled up onto the pavement right outside my front gate, actually while I was talking on the phone to a senior political figure about the raid on my friend. The police just sat in the van staring at my house. I contacted my lawyers who contacted the Crown Office. The police van pulled away and my lawyers contacted me back to say that the Crown Office had told them I would be charged, or officially “cited”, with Contempt of Court, but they agreed there was no need for a search of my home or to remove my devices, or for vans full of police.

On Thursday two plain clothes police arrived and handed me the indictment. Shortly thereafter, an email arrived from The Times newspaper, saying that the Crown Office had “confirmed” that I had been charged with contempt of court. In the case of my friend whose house was raided, he was contacted by the Daily Record just before the raid even happened!

I am charged with contempt of court and the hearing is on 7 July at the High Court in Edinburgh. The contempt charge falls in two categories:

i) Material published before the trial liable to prejudice a jury
ii) Material published which could assist “jigsaw identification” of the failed accusers.

Plainly neither of these is the true motive of the Crown Office. If they believed that material I published was likely to have prejudiced the jury, then they had an obvious public duty to take action BEFORE the trial – and the indictment shows conclusively they were monitoring my material long before the trial. To leave this action until after the trial which they claim the material was prejudicing, would be a serious act of negligence on their part. It is quite extraordinary to prosecute for it now and not before the trial.

As for identifying the failed conspirators, I have done less than the mainstream media. But plainly the Crown Office, or whoever is pushing them to this persecution, had no genuine interest in protecting the identities, otherwise why did they tip off the media that I was being charged, and thus guarantee further publicity? If protecting the identities was their motive, to tip off the media would obviously be counterproductive.

But what proves that the Crown Office is acting from base motives and not those stated is the one-sided nature of this. Only supporters of Alex Salmond – the Alex Salmond found innocent by the jury – are being pursued by this continuing Police Scotland operation.

There are literally thousands who put out “Salmond is guilty” “Salmond is a rapist” “Salmond is a pervert” posts on social media before and during the trial. Not one has had the police knock on the door. The Herald published absolutely deliberately, the day before the trial, a montage of Alex Salmond amongst photos of mass murderers. They have not been charged. Every newspaper published “jigsaw identification” information which I withheld. They have not been charged or investigated, despite the evidence brilliantly compiled and presented to the Police.

No, this is a blatant, one-sided political persecution. That much is entirely plain. I have therefore decided, in the interests of open justice, to publish the entire indictment against me (with a single sentence redacted where I think the prosecution were excessively indiscreet). Neither the indictment nor the covering letter is marked confidential or not for publication. It is, so far as I know, a public document.

The Crown have very deliberately not included the names of any of the failed conspirators in the indictment and instead refer to the women by their court allocated letters. That is a plain indication to me that this is a public document drafted specifically with publication in mind. Otherwise the document would have more naturally used the names and not the alphabet letters.

More fundamentally this indictment is the basis on which they are attempting to put me in prison – in fact the indictment specifies up to two years in jail and an unlimited fine as the punishment sought from the court. I think the public interest, and my own interest, in it being public is very substantial.

The state believes it has finally discovered a way to put me in prison without the inconvenient hurdle of a jury of my peers. Contempt of Court is just decided by a judge. It is extraordinary that you can go to jail for a substantial two years with no jury protection and no test of “beyond reasonable doubt”; and on the whim of a judge defending what he may view as the dignity of his own office. This really is the epitome of bad law. To use it against freedom of speech is disgusting.

So here is the full indictment against me:

redactedcaseagainstcraigmurray (1)

If the indictment contains anything they did not wish to be public, well, I didn’t force them to serve it on me. From my side, the proceedings against me will be entirely open. I will remind you that you may find all or part of the indictment initially convincing; but you are yet to see my point by point reply, which naturally I shall also publish in due course.

[UPDATE

Pending the outcome of the trial, and on legal advice, I have redacted from the indictment those sentences complained of as aiding identification of a witness, and have redacted same sentences from original blog posts. My position is firmly that they absolutely do not they do not contribute to likely identification of witnesses, and the mainstream media did that to a far greater degree than I.]

The purpose of this operation against free speech is a desperate attempt to keep the lid on the nature of the state conspiracy to fit up Alex Salmond. Once the parliamentary inquiry starts, a huge amount of evidence of conspiracy which the court did not allow the defence to introduce in evidence during the criminal trial, will be released. The persecution of myself is an attempt to intimidate independent figures into not publishing anything about it. The lickspittle media of course do not have to be intimidated. To this end, I am charged specifically with saying that the Alex Salmond case was a fit-up and a conspiracy in which the Crown Office was implicated. So I thought I would say it again now:

The Alex Salmond case was a fit-up and a conspiracy in which the Crown Office was implicated, foiled by the jury. If Scotland is the kind of country where you go to jail for saying that, let me get my toothbrush.

Before then, I am afraid we have to fund my defence and I shall be very grateful for donations to my defence fund. My initial target is £60,000. I shall post daily updates on total reached, but I shall be using my established funding channels and not involving a crowdfunding website. I do not intend to fight this battle entirely on the defensive, and some of the funding may be put to launching actions against the Crown or others.




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752 thoughts on “Craig Murray Defence Fund Launched

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  • Gogsymac

    Just a point to remember. It isn’t an Indictment that Craig has been served with. It is Petition – different procedure altogether. The procedure followed is like a civil case although the court has the power at the end of the day (if matters are proved) to impose a fine or at worst imprisonment.

    • Guido

      “at the end of the day” – will it take that long to reach the verdict?

      • Gogsymac

        Not sure how long the case will take. It will depend upon the court timetable. There is a preliminary hearing this month I think and the final hearing will be set for a few weeks ahead of that. Craig will no doubt keep us informed on that front.

      • Gogsymac

        In fact – I’ve just read the post by Craig again – (note to self read things properly before posting comments) The hearing has already been assigned for 7th July so we should see what the court does then. Sorry to mislead. The date later this month was the time given for Answers to the Petition to be lodged.

  • Formerly+T-Bear

    Mr Murray,
    A response to your request for funds to cover Julian Assange’s court proceedings was sent, an amount enough to cover a modest night’s lodgings in London (from experience once while traveling from Spain to Ireland without going through an airport). Since it is becoming more and more likely there will not be further proceedings as well as you will be unable to travel there, please take the residue of that donation and apply it to your legal defence funds.

    Law-fare is an insidious legal cancer designed to create fatal stresses in the victim. It is obvious that the intent behind the action is to cause self-censorship of yourself and eliminate all journalism emanating from unapproved sources. Your observation of the London magistrate’s prepared summary is a threat to all fellow-travellers of the neoliberal thought collective evidenced by the despicable item presiding in the Scottish court you are now a subject of and will doubtlessly be found remiss (such are the jejune ways of children learning social behaviour, pretending to be adult) leading to greater self defence appeals and costs. You have a costly experience ahead of yourself, but that is the point of the exercise. I’ve had a similar life experience, the lesson received resulted in visceral aversion and contempt for censorship in any form imposed as you are about to experience. Stay strong.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    Think you are going to see China joining the fray, thanks to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claiming that the coronavirus originated in the Wuhan lab. Though he did not provide a single bit of the alleged “enormous evidence”, he justified the charge because China is not supporting the international experts making the investigation,
    .
    Think President Xi will respond by claiming it started in the Fort Detrick labs in Frederick, Maryland, and was delivered to China by missile.

    This will result in Trump kicking off his re-election campaign by reviving the Yellow Peril which always sells weft in the USA.

  • Measured by the heart

    Craig, I’ve been a fan of your writing for a few years now, but in recent months, you’ve been on smoking form, producing fundament-shaking writing almost daily.
    Whatever the outcome of this process, one of its effects will be to have taken your attention for a while. Some will think the use of resources and risk to the judiciary’s capital is worthwhile for this reason alone.
    Good luck. I hope that you emerge unscathed from this and if possible, that this harrowing experience provides material for articles as brilliant as those you have been producing.

  • NotARobot

    Hi, Craig.
    Could you just drop a line, only to let us know you are as OK as can be, given your present situation?
    As time goes by, I guess we all can’t help but wondering when we don’t hear from you…
    I mean, one single line please.
    Endure.

  • Johny Conspiranoid

    Has anyone noticed that the words “procedural diet” appear twice in the indictment where it looks loke it means “procedural date”. Do typos make any difference legally?

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    Craig, just remember that we all are locked up now, just waiting to see if we die a natural death or killed in the coming Armageddon between the US and China, now that North Korea’s Kim Jong-un is not dead. Trump hoped he had died so the country would be due for regime change.

    So don’t go for broke to escape prison. though I shall be sending more money if needed.

  • DaveX

    Keep up the good work Craig. I’ve donated a bit from the savings I will make from cancelling my Labour party subs. You must be doing something right when the state focuses on you. fraternal greetings & hope you are well.

  • Anna

    Dear Craig, I appreciate all you do so much. I read your blog but I haven’t commented before. I sent some money for your legal expenses fund but it was only £10. I’ll send more when I can. Thank you and best wishes.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    So Neil Ferguson, the science ariser for Johnson who I mistook for right-winger Niall Ferguson, is resigning for behaving like Bozo, who still doesn’t follow his own guidelines in his relationship with his partner, and Big Mouth Trump is firing his scientific pandemic advisory group, our leaders don’t have a clue about what is required, Craig might be better off now just losing the case he has little chance of winning. He will be a much bigger inditement of the government in prison rather than out in the dangerous society.

    I would happily serve for him if I could. I am doing no good just being locked up by our clueless society.

  • Jack

    Neil Ferguson claimed there will only be a few thousands of death a month back. Now its 30000!
    Its not only in the UK, alot of nations have these pundits saying stuff they obviously know nothing about meanwhile people are dying.

  • Sebastian

    Don’t let them grind you down! There’s some agreement among agriculturists that muck is best well spread to get the benefit of it, and I’ve an idea it holds true in other arenas. Them doubling down again, after the fiasco of the inquiry, and the court case, might be on the way to revealing the truth of the matter far more widely. If played with a straight bat. A long overdue donation accompanies, to assist that end. Giving it away now while its still worth something seems like a good idea. Before this bit of vaccine research gone feral* completes that deep demolition of the financial system that was begun in January. When DT and his generals learnt, as payback for an act of, surely some, desperation, that all their bases and troops surrounding Iran are hostage to that countries hitherto unsuspected targeting abilities. And removed the support of the existing dollar reserve financial system. At one time (pre1973) backed by gold, since then backed by US military supremacy. (look what happened when Saddam signed an oil contract in euros…)
    Here is John Pilger “The coming war with China”: (Nearly two hours of lock down taken care of . At the possible cost of some peace of mind.)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAfeYMONj9E
    I’ve an idea a lot of genomic scientists are squirming at the unaccustomed intensity of geopolitical focus their patch of the frontier of knowledge has suddenly gained: Reports of SARS COV2 in samples from Europe taken in December rather undermine certainty on the Chinese origin narratives. Have to wait and see what the specialists can bring themselves to admit to reading from the RNA, the answer is surely in there. And may out, in the fullness of time.

    * ‘vaccine research gone feral’ : I paraphrase a Professor Luc Montagnier’s possibly diplomatic take on the nature of the beast. ( Did not sooth the French government, I got the impression. But as he says in an interview,”I’ve run out of age”. And he’s won his Nobel prize, so he can say as he thinks.)

  • Graham Senior-Milne

    By the way, with regard to publishing material before the trial (in my previous post I was talking about publishing during a trial), a juror would have a duty to declare that he/she had seen material which might prejudice his verdict, but this would mean that he/she would be excluded from sitting on the jury – so there can be no risk of prejudicing the outcome of the trial – and therefore no contempt on the part of the publisher. If the juror does not declare such a fact then he/she is in contempt, not the publisher. You need to challenge the prosecution about how the ‘substantial risk’ arises. If they can’t do that they fail; they have to prove that here is a substantial risk. You could have published the victims names directly but if this did not give rise to a substantial risk then the charge of contempt fails. They haven’t got a leg to stand on in my view.

  • Graham Senior-Milne

    With regard to para. 31 of the petition, it is not enough that the material ‘could’ lead to the identification of a ‘victim’, the material has to create a ‘substantial risk’ of the ‘victim’ being identified. There is a huge difference between ‘could’ and ‘create a substantial risk of’. You can trap them with this. You simply get them to admit they are alleging that the material ‘could’ reveal the identity of a ‘victim’ and then you point out that this is not enough. You then ask the court to dismiss the petition on that basis.

  • Graham Senior-Milne

    Another PS. With reference to the petition and the Twitter users who said that they could identify victims from your blog, this is irrelevant because the fact that they might be able to do this cannot affect the trial; they play no part in the trial. It is only if members of the jury access the blog that this possibility arises and, as I have already said in another post, it would be contempt for a jury member to access material not admitted into the process, given which there can be no ‘substantial risk’ as referred to in the Contempt of Court Act 1981 (‘a substantial risk that the course of justice in the particular proceedings will be seriously impeded or prejudiced’).

  • Annemarie Kappus

    I am a big fan of yours and just made a small monthly donation,hoping that it will be of any help for you!!Wish you all the best!

  • Tony Kevin

    An important public communication by Craig Murray, a strong and courageous man. Read this and repost , it matters. Sad to see this happening in Scotland of all places. I expected better of #NicolaSturgeon ‘s Scottish government. #QuintinOliver. Paul Barratt.
    Tony Kevin.

  • Robert

    “Outing” the accusers isn’t just illegal, it’s immoral, in that it make it less likely that those in need of anonymity will believe that it can be achieved. It shouldn’t be contemplated.

    The fundamental defence is that the information complained about could not lead to identification of the accusers.

    The important other issue is that others did publish information leading to easy identification; but these are separate issues.

  • Mac

    I read all your posts regarding the trial. I tried really hard to identify who you were talking about and it was simply not possible.

    If a person already knew who the accusers were then it might seem like you did provide enough pieces of the jigsaw but if you did not then it was was frustratingly not possible to work it out from your posts. I had some suspicions (but mostly based on the judicial review fiasco). Same goes for Wings. The papers publishing the date of the meeting between AS and the Scottish Government however did allow me to pin-point one of them. No charges for them though of course. It is really sinister what is going on at the moment in Scotland.

  • Jim Sinclare

    Some years ago Channel 4 screened re-enactments of topical trials, performed by the Tricycle Theatre Company, and the BBC did the Oz Trial, starring Leslie Phillips as Judge Argyle. Maybe there is a theatre group who would like to perform the Salmond Trial? Straight to video – youtube – for a wider audience.

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