A Very Political Prosecution 356


CORRECTION I published in error that 73% of those who know identities of Salmond’s accusers learnt them from mainstream media. The correct figure is 66%. I aggregated broadcast and newspapers but these were not exclusive questions. In fact the percentage of those in the know who cited broadcast, newspapers or both as their source was 66%.

We are looking for potential witnesses who would be willing to give a sworn statement, and if necessary swear on oath in court in my trial for contempt, that they followed my reporting of the Alex Salmond trial and were unable to work out any of the identities of the accusers from my reports. It is particularly helpful if you can say more than this in one of two ways:

Firstly, if you can say you were unable to work out who the accusers were from my accounts, despite yourself possessing some specialist knowledge, that would be helpful. Such specialist knowledge might include having held office in the SNP, having dealings with Alex Salmond and his staff, or having been a relevant civil servant.

And/or secondly, if you can say that you were unable to work out any of the identities from my reporting, but were able to do so from other reporting, and name the source.

I hope it goes without saying that I only want people to come forward who can genuinely do so in truth, and be prepared if necessary to swear to that.

I was very careful in my reporting not to “out” any of the identities, and I am happy to say that I can now prove that I had no significant effect on popular knowledge of the identities of the failed accusers. I took the unusual decision to commission an opinion poll on the subject from Panelbase, one of the UK’s leading pollsters. This was made possible using funds you provided with the defence fund, and I hope you will agree it is money well spent. We will seek to submit the poll as evidence in court.

You should realise this was at risk. I was committed to publishing the poll, whatever its results. If it came out saying that only a few people knew the identities, and they all learnt them from Craig Murray, I would have had to admit to that. But in fact, this is not what the poll shows at all.

It is important to note that my questions were an add-on to a Panelbase poll using their absolutely normal methods for sampling Scottish public opinion. They surveyed 1086 people and applied their standard weightings to the results.

The finding is stunning. 8% of the adult population of Scotland believe they know the identity of one or more of the failed accusers. That means over 350,000 people know, or believe they know, identities.

Of these, 66% learnt the identities from TV and newspapers. 29% learnt from independent websites or blogs. 19% learnt from friends or contacts. (You could of course learn from more than one source so this adds to more than 100).

We then asked an open question, giving people the opportunity to name the specific media from which they learnt the identities. There were a limited number of responses, so I give here the number of people who named each source rather than dress it up as a percentage:

Can you name a specific broadcast, newspaper or website source from which you learnt or deduced the identities? (there were no prompts, an open answer)

Scotland on Sunday 3

Sun 3

Guardian 2

Daily Record 2

BBC 2

Scotsman 2

Times 2

Herald 1

Telegraph 1

John James blog 1

Channel 4 1

ITV 1

Craig Murray blog 1

Press and Journal 1

National 1

Financial Times 1

Daily Mail 1

Can you name the specific journalist or blogger you had learnt or deduced identities from? (There were no prompts, an open answer):

Dani Garavelli 4

Severin Carrell 2

Magnus Linklater 1

Paul Hutcheon 1

Kenny Farquharson 1

Kieran Andrews 1

David Mackay 1

Mure Dickie 1

(Nobody actually replied Craig Murray or John James to this question, but given each had his blog mentioned once as a source it would probably be fair to add both with 1 each).

Dani Garavelli tops both lists, because her article on the case was published in Scotland on Sunday. As that is the Sunday edition of the Scotsman, that unionist rag is well ahead as the prime source of knowledge, with the Murdoch stable of the Times and Sun combined not far behind.

Plainly, it is unsatisfactory from the point of view of the law that 350,000 people know identities. Something which 350,000 people know in Scotland is not a secret, and has achieved the critical mass required for anybody who actually wants to know to be able to find out just by asking around. I strongly suspect that the large majority of those who do not know, do not wish to anyway.

But equally plainly, it is not my fault that 350,000 people know. It is overwhelmingly down to the mainstream media, as the poll shows. The simple truth is that, in a trial where a number of very politically powerful figures conspired together to bring false charges against one of the most famous people in Scotland, anonymity was always going to be extremely hard to protect. You can’t expect it to work as it rightly would in protecting the identity of a worker in Dundee attacked by a stranger. The poll shows that it did not work; and it proves that is not my fault.

I assume the single individual who mentioned me as the source was acting in good faith – though it is worth noting that the polling was carried out after every newspaper in Scotland had run the story that I am being prosecuted for contempt of court for revealing identities.  In that circumstance, that I am not more prominent is remarkable and must reflect a truth.

The charge of “jigsaw identification” is very difficult to refute. As soon as you publish anything at all about the evidence in a case, there is of course the chance that is the last piece of information that an individual with particular knowledge needed to work out an identity. Let me put if this way. If the jigsaw is a face in 1,000 pieces, if your information contributes 12 pieces out of 1,000 you may think you revealed nothing. But you cannot guard against the person sitting at home who already has 800 pieces and can make a guess now your 12 filled in an area.

My lawyers advise that for me to say others were guilty of jigsaw identification is not a defence, any more than if I were to rob a bank it would be a defence to say somebody else did it too. But what this poll shows conclusively is that in practice anyone who reported on the trial could be accused of jigsaw identification.

Nobody can look at the above data and say that the obvious course of justice is to prosecute Craig Murray and nobody else. Is there a single person who honestly believes that it is a coincidence that they are prosecuting the only journalist who fairly reported the defence case against this government led fit-up? That they have chosen to prosecute the political dissident and whistleblower and not the mainstream media who were collectively responsible for far more identification? The selectivity of this prosecution represents an Article 6 abuse of the European Convention on Human Rights.

There are of course two strands to the indictment against me, insofar as anything can be deduced from that incoherent document. One is jigsaw identification. The other is reporting likely to influence the trial. I have just demolished the first strand; you cannot possibly prosecute me and not the mainstream media. I refuse to take the second strand seriously. If they genuinely believed my reporting could influence the trial, they had a public duty to take action before or during the trial, not months afterwards. This is very plainly a political persecution.

A final note. With over 5,000 people having contributed to my defence fund, I do hope you will forgive the lack of personal replies to thank you. I am really quite overwhelmed and humbled by your kindness.

You should also know that, as it was never my intention to identify anyone, I have pending the outcome of my trial temporarily censored those sentences in my articles complained of by the prosecution as causing jigsaw identification, even though I strongly deny that they do. Prior to receiving the indictment, I had no idea precisely what the complaint referred to.  I have also censored the indictment of its references to the same material. I do not believe there was any problem with the originals; but it is a very few sentences and my lawyers rather insisted. I hope you will not feel I am too cowardly in this.

I have refused to censor those larger passages the Crown complain of where I state that the charges were a fit-up and a state sponsored conspiracy. I believe here there is a vital argument of freedom of speech, and I will not bend.

With grateful thanks to those who donated or subscribed to make this reporting possible.

This article is entirely free to reproduce and publish, including in translation, and I very much hope people will do so actively. Truth shall set us free.

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356 thoughts on “A Very Political Prosecution

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  • John Goss

    Well I could not work out who they were. I even tried searching to find out out of curiosity. Would be happy to swear a statement to that effect. But then I don’t have any specialist knowledge of Scottish politics or the SNP workings and procedures.

    I am so saddened to see honest people like yourself being targeted for reporting the truth as you saw it.

  • bj

    The problem here for you is your throwing reason and science at politics.
    The problem you can create for ‘them’ is: publicity.
    Maybe that is why your Twitter is intermittent — that is: the publicity works.

  • Ronnie

    Happy to be a witness Craig tho don’t quite meet your requirements.

    Found out who one complainant was from twitter as was following the case closely (and active on twitter) and whilst commentators such as Rev Stu posited it was obvious from multiple mainstream sources I gave up after 5 minutes of trying a couple of times, concluding life was too short. So did not get anything from your blog.

    Would like to think I’m a responsible contributing member of society, currently lol.

  • Yalt

    “(Nobody actually replied Craig Murray or John James to this question, but given each had his blog mentioned once as a source it would probably be fair to add both with 1 each).”

    ————-

    I’m not entirely certain this is true. Imagine a hypothetical reader who had the final piece click into place while reading one of the quotes from Garavelli at this blog. Couldn’t such a person truthfully respond “Craig Murray’s Blog” and “Dani Garavelli” to the respective questions?

    • Yalt

      Maybe lending some credence to this interpretation: four people named “Dani Garavelli” but only three named “Scotland on Sunday.”

      • John O'Dowd

        Garavelli’s article was published in an on-line, right-wing, Tory-front, propaganda publication called Tortoise.

        Assuming it was also published on SoS – which I don’t, nor would ever, read – Tortoise could account for reader No4.

    • Tatyana

      It may mean that someone identified a person here, on Mr. Murray’s blog, but from a comment in duscussion, not from Mr. Murray’s article itself.

  • Jm

    Currently the worlds largest jigsaw is 42,000 pieces.

    The smallest,i’d imagine,is 2 pieces.

    So which scale of jigsaw are they talking about?

    I also,after a good few attempts,couldn’t work out the identities.

    Wishing you and your family the very best Craig.

    Stay strong.

    • bj

      As to their characterization of jigsaw, I’ll repeat myself: that characterization implicitly admits that those accusers originally were one and whole — an admittance of …literally a conspiracy.

  • Laguerre

    I would have thought that Craig already has a good case. I couldn’t see much in his reports that allowed readers to identify the accusers. Whether others have done more is regrettably legally irrelevant. What I am not certain about is whether legally if the extra information given by others, if combined with what Craig said, then permits an identification, is Craig at fault? In my view, no. Craig’s statements have to be taken on their own, not in combination with what others may have said. It may depend on whether those other remarks were made before or afterwards. I thought afterwards. Not a lawyer, so maybe I don’t have it right.

    • Jm

      If it was combination jigsawing Laguerre then even more strange that Craig,so far,is the only one being prosecuted.

      • manandboy

        There is surely only one purpose in this flimsy case which is to upset and disturb Craig’s peace and purpose through the pressure of harassment, intimidation and threats of prison.

        No10 Downing Street is now home to a Brexit-driven gang of political thugs and bullies.

        But then I think we knew that.

    • Stonky

      Whether others have done more is regrettably legally irrelevant…

      It’s not legally irrelevant. The right to equal treatment before the law is a fundamental and specific human right with protection under Article 7 of the UDHR:

      All are equal before the law … All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration…

      Normally people would turn to that right as a means of obtaining protection by the law, but there is no reason it shouldn’t be exercised to obtain protection from the law, where there is clear evidence that the law is being deliberately applied in a discriminatory manner.

      And the “speeding” counter-argument is specious. The authorities couldn’t possibly catch and prosecute everyone who speeds. But in this case they could perfectly easily identify and prosecute every single one of those journalists who provided information allowing the identification of the complainants. That they have chosen not to prosecute a single one of them is clear evidence of the legal system discriminating against Craig. I would be very surprised if his legal team don’t try to argue discrimination amounting to a violation of his human rights.

      • Ilya G Poimandres

        Can we call it the illegal system already? 🙂 Article 7 is wonderful, but clearly not practically applicable when it matters. What’s the point of saying ‘we have equal treatment and freedom of speech unlike China’, when de facto, if the system of power is facing the criticism, both equal treatment and freedom of speech will be stamped out here as there!

      • Patrick Roden

        Good point about speeding.

        Another way to use this analogy would be to ask the question:

        Would it be fair if the law in Scotland has access to a speed camera’s data that showed a number of cars had broken the speed limit by let’s say 25% but chose to prosecute only 1 of them?

        Would this be fair? and would this person not have a right to expect that either no one caught by the speed camera and who has broken the limit by at least 25% should be prosecuted, or all of them should.

        • Patrick Roden

          Taking the speeding analogy even further;

          You are driving along a motorway and the national speed limit is in force so you are driving at about 68 miles per hour because you are a law-abiding citizen.

          The police stop you and tell you that you are breaking the newly enforced 50 mph speed limit in that stretch of motorway.
          You respond that you had not seen any signs saying that there was a new limit 50mph.

          The police admit that there were no signs indicating the new limit but they are charging some people and let others off.

          The fact that the court did not tell Craig that something he or a commenter had written identified one of the women, to give him an opportunity to remove that information, shows that this analogy is a fair reflection on the way the courts and the police have been acting during this whole sordid affair!

  • N_

    Nobody can look at the above data and say that the obvious course of justice is to prosecute Craig Murray and nobody else. Is there a single person who honestly believes that it is a coincidence that they are prosecuting the only journalist who fairly reported the defence case against this government led fit-up? That they have chosen to prosecute the political dissident and whistleblower and not the mainstream media who were collectively responsible for far more identification? The selectivity of this prosecution represents an Article 6 abuse of the European Convention on Human Rights.

    There are of course two strands to the indictment against me, insofar as anything can be deduced from that incoherent document. One is jigsaw identification. The other is reporting likely to influence the trial. I have just demolished the first strand; you cannot possibly prosecute me and not the mainstream media. I refuse to take the second strand seriously. If they genuinely believed my reporting could influence the trial, they had a public duty to take action before or during the trial, not months afterwards. This is very plainly a political persecution.

    Yes – both strands fall if you show the prosecution is an abuse of process, which it patently obviously is for those reasons. The poll would help, but the other side will fight ferociously to stop it being admitted as evidence. The judge may say sure, you can produce it, but only in mitigation. I’m dubious about citing Article 6. If you win, you will probably bring down the Scottish first minister if she’s still in office by the time of the hearing…

  • Republicofscotland

    Just be careful Craig whataboutery as you say isn’t a defence, they’ll twist your blog posts on the trial so they can to send you down. You’ll be up against the establishments Cardinal Richelieu.

    • N_

      Whataboutery has to be framed in terms of there being an official decision to prosecute Craig but not to prosecute many others and therefore the prosecution is an abuse of process.

      Now we get two “shoulds”:

      * the judge “should” allow the defence to make that argument;
      * the judge “should not” decide on it until they have finished making it.

      So the defence needs to look at what communications there were between the Scottish government (Nicola Sturgeon) and the prosecution, and between other figures close to Sturgeon (such as her chief of staff Liz Lloyd) and lawyers working with the prosecution, and for that they need access to their records, ordered if necessary by the judge.

      Dani Garavelli’s records should be subpoeanaed too. Who okayed the shape and number of her “jigsaw puzzle” pieces? Who did she speak to? Get in her court and ask her.

      “Legal privilege” could be claimed, or that ludicrous concept of “journalistic privilege”. (Why not “bookmaker’s privilege” or “prostitute’s privilege”? But I digress.) Fine. But if owing to some other f***er’s “privilege” (whether they’re a state official – “executive”, “judicial”, or chief of staff – or a favoured “journalist”) Craig can’t make his defence properly then they’re supposed to let him go. A person “shouldn’t” be convicted if (through no fault of their own) they can’t make their defence properly.

  • Caratacus

    More than pleased to be added to the list, Craig. You have my email address. Awaiting the call …

  • paul

    I followed the case as closely as allowed.
    I do not care about the wretched individuals involved.
    Nothing I have read here or elsewhere leaves me anymore certain about their identity.
    I have read every word you wrote.
    I will be happy to declare my my complete ignorance to mr Prentice.
    You have my email, use if you need

  • Cubby

    On this blog which is a bastion of free speech on VE Day I would just like to say “We’ll meet again…….

    Only joking – on behalf of the Highlanders left behind at Dunkirk on the orders of Churchill I would just like to say stuff your Union Jack up your jacksie and keep it there until Scotland is independent.

      • bj

        In school I learned:
        – borders are ideas, e.g. intangible fence between countries
        – boarders are beds to place the tulips in
        Just sayin’.
        Hi Brian 😉

        • N_

          Is there a pun in your third line that I’m not getting, or were there just no boarders at your school?

      • Cubby

        Britnat TV has been trolling me all day with the Lambeth walk, bloody Vera Lynn and England won the war crap – sick of it – more people dying due to Britnat Brexiteers incompetence over the virus than died in the Blitz.

        A day of Britnat propaganda and British (English) exceptionalism in the middle of a health crisis to try and cover up the UK being a laughing stock across the world.

        What were British soldiers fighting for all over the world eg Burma, the Middle East to protect Coventry, Sunderland, Glasgow – no – to hold on the British Empire colonies gained through military might. Nothing to celebrate in military conquests creating colonies to be exploited.

        • N_

          Vera helping out one would expect, but I’m sorry to hear they’re co-opting the Lambeth Walk.

          • Cubby

            Kempe

            I didn’t – I knew it would bring out a plonker of a Britnat like you to say that – it is so bloody obvious what the coverage would be like. My wife had the telly on and told me.

            Britnat hypocrisy:-

            it is not right to have a Declaration of Arbroath Commemoration during this pandemic in early April we need to focus on the virus.
            A month later with the UK having the highest death toll in Europe and demonstrating a distinct lack of British exceptionalism we need a VE Day commemoration to make us Britnats forget how useless we are. England won the war says the newsreel – aye right.

          • N_

            My grandparents were from Lambeth and Battersea and I grew up with the Lambeth Walk, which is also the name of a street in Lambeth. Today was the first time I learnt about its fictional use in a 1962 film about D Day. These two areas have strong leftwing histories (especially Battersea) and there was nothing either EngNat or BritNat in singing the song to take the p*ss out of Hitler. The British Union of Fascists got their a*ses kicked at Cable Street when they marched to the East End but they wouldn’t have dared to march to Lambeth or Battersea in the first place.

  • Ashers

    Craig, I would be prepared to be such a witness. I am somewhat “specialised” as you reference – SNP member, “worked” (student) for SNP as an agent (paid) for SNP in Kilmarnock 1992, been an SNP member since (disliked Salmond, preferred Sillars, met Salmond etc) ; left Scotland in 1995 post graduation, retained SNP membership, worked in Belgium, USA, Ireland – my job at end of 2019 is Vice President, R&D of Multinational, salary > 170k. Was appointed to National Economic forum and other Scot Gov quangos. I was very interested in trial, can honestly say I that I did not identify any complainant from your blog, I only identified from other press

    • N_

      Salary > 170k.

      Have you got any club memberships or something that might wow the judge, because you sound a bit nouveau the way you talk about money.

  • Ian T-W

    Could it not be that some of the people who claim that they have been able to identify the Alphabet Women, from whatever source, are, in fact, mistaken?

    The identities of the accusers have not officially been made known. So it could well be that some people have misidentified the Alphabet Women.

    It could also be that some people who have no idea who the women are are nevertheless claiming to have identified them because they wish to appear knowledgeable to others. Claiming certain knowledge is not the same as having it.

    Even if someone were to have correctly identified an accuser, would it be possible to prove that it was one single source that enabled them to do that? Wouldn’t any other source from which they obtained any relevant information also have contributed to the identification?

    Furthermore, if there is certain information which would be critical to making an identification possible, shouldn’t the court proactively identify such details and specifically prohibit them from being published?

    • Stonky

      Furthermore, if there is certain information which would be critical to making an identification possible, shouldn’t the court proactively identify such details and specifically prohibit them from being published?

      That’s where the logic of the thing falls apart. There is a whole range of people out there, starting with those close enough to events that they could identify the complainants from the tiniest detail, and ending with people who still wouldn’t know who the complainants are even if they were told every single thing about them bar their names.

      If the idea is that no one at all should be able to identify any of the complainants, ever, then the whole trial should have been held in camera, with a perpetual ban on ever publishing any information at all about anything that happened in court, or indeed any information at all about any of the complainants, now and in the future.

      I guess I shouldn’t be giving them ideas.

    • N_

      In the poll the numbers of respondents in the sample who said they knew the women’s identities might be higher than the number who actually know, because some of them might have been mistaken or boasting (and to “believe (…) you know” something means different things to different people); or lower, if some respondents were scared of saying they knew the identities because they thought it might get them into trouble. The second consideration is usually catered for by pollsters, but I don’t know whether it was in this particular poll. I’m surprised at the suggestion that only 8% in Scotland know any of the names – I would have thought the percentage would be higher, given all the hints in the mainstream media

    • Bayard

      Good point. How do those who claim to identify the women know that they’ve got the right women? They won’t until the identities are made public. It’s like thinking you’ve solved the crossword and then finding you’ve got three answers wrong, but they still fit.

  • Hugh McKee

    I’m the same as the other commenter, John Goss. I tried and failed to identify the women. Felt a bit of a numpty as I was reading tweets saying “just Google the two most obvious words”. I did and got mainly Guardian articles I think. In a couple there was mention of one complainant being at a meeting with a Salmond advisor when the first two complaints were made that were the basis of the civil case. It was definitely a Guardian article that told me a witness had said this. Try as I might though I couldnt find historic coverage of that meeting so not sure of names. Think the woman who came from Police Scotland and was in charge of the case must have been there but not sure who else was there and seemed a bit too weird for someone investigating a complaint to also be a complainant so still not sure of even one name.
    If needed, you can get me by email on [email protected]

  • Gavin

    I worked out the identity of one accuser from the statement in many MSM articles regarding a meeting at a specific date with named parties present.

    I do not recall any detail published on Craig Murray’s blog that helped with that identification.

    No idea if that’s any good to you, but if it is I’d be happy to be a witness.

  • N_

    Can’t someone use parliamentary privilege and do what Peter Hain did when he named Philip Green? There is no shame in being the victim of a sexual assault; there’s a lot of shame in claiming a man assaulted you when he didn’t, thereby committing perjury. A private criminal prosecution for perjury would require prior High Court of Justiciary permission; but a civil suit for libel wouldn’t, as far as I know. Why do these false accusers still want their names kept quiet? One day they might get asked that question in court.

    • Cubby

      N

      You have certainly changed your tune from when you continually posted that Salmond was as guilty as hell and looked forward to him being banged up.

      • N_

        @Cubby – I always said he should get a fair trial, when others were saying he shouldn’t stand trial at all. I did think he was likely to be found guilty of some of the main charges, but that was just an opinion obviously not based on having heard all the evidence as the jury did. As far as I am concerned he has cleared his name of horrible false accusations that were made against him. (Had the jury returned a verdict of proven it would have been good if he’d gone to prison because that’s where attempted rapists should be, including if they held high government office. But that’s not the position. He’s innocent.) I don’t support Scottish independence, but that has nothing to do with it. It’s going to be good if those who want to make Scotland a better place whether pro or anti independence can work together to expose this filthy administration which sought to jail a man on false charges and now wants to jail our host on this blog.

        • Cubby

          N

          Revisionism. Can’t be bothered quoting some of your previous posts.

          You were all for “this filthy administration” banging up Salmond.

          There are a number of very bad apples at the top of the SNP and Scot gov which I have said are not independence supporters and are nothing but Britnat saboteurs ( your lot N ) and need cleared out before the whole barrel is rotten. The vast majority of the SNP consists of genuine independence supporters.

          The British state whilst not very good at a lot of things, eg pandemic management, have maintained high levels of capability in infiltration and destruction of organisations not to their liking. That’s your lot again N.

          • Herbie

            “The British state whilst not very good at a lot of things, eg pandemic management, have maintained high levels of capability in infiltration and destruction of organisations not to their liking.”

            Oh, yes. This is so very very true, but not just in Westminster, in every capital across the world.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuBe93FMiJc

            I mean, ya gotta keep an eye on the competition,right.

            Nothing personal.

            Just business.

            The big corporate takeover of the world was continually highlighted and discussed on msm during the late 80’s and 90’s, and into the 00’s.

            The BBC, ITV, Channel Four, The Guardian, Independent and so on.

            It was a truism of that time.

            So, they were saying that state and political institutions, civil society, were becoming weaker in the face of rising trans-national corporations, many, more powerful than most of the world’s political states.

            But yeah, we weren’t quite fully feeling it then.

            We are, now.

  • Giyane

    Craig, anybody who took part in the survey who approved of Salmond being prosecuted, even if only , like me, having read some info in the MSM, could have pieced together a different jigsaw, that you were the person who disagreed with their casual opinion.

    Dani Garavelli , writing in a popular Scottish rag, ranted at length against you personally. So the person with the casual and uninformed opinion only needed another jigsaw piece from Garavelli ‘s rant to maliciously nominate you as having identified the accusers.

    In that case , two jigsaw pieces is like heads or tails. A 50 50 chance. It’s very extremely likely that the person who identified your blog was giving you a metaphorical penalty point football tackle.

    Tittle tattle. Tiddly widdly Mrs Tittlemouse . No teeth! No teeth!

  • James

    What you do not mention about the Panelbase poll: for those who said they thought they knew the identities – was there a follow up question of `who do you think the alphabet sisters were?’ Because if people replied:

    1) Margo Macdonald
    2) The late great Sir Hugh MacDiarmid
    3) Frank Bruno
    4) The Loch Ness Monster

    then this would cast doubt on whether the reporting had actually revealed any of the identities – even for people who claimed that they had been able to deduce them.

    • craig Post author

      James,

      We proposed exactly that question (or rather a free field in which you could write the initials of the accusers you knew) so we could check if people really knew. But it was decided this was potentially moving into dubious legal territory. So we did not do it. As the article repeated and carefully states, 8% of the population believe they know one or more identity.

      • Tatyana

        Mr. Murray, I drive your attention to the fact that your blog was mentioned, while you yourself were not. That means, maybe, that someone identified a woman from comments, not from the article. If so, I think you would rather be prepared.

      • James

        Good – this issue was addressed – I now have confidence that the survey was carried out professionally according to good principles.

        The number of people who actually know could be *way* less than the 8 percent of people who think they know (just as the number of people who think they have had Coronavirus is way less than the number who have actually had it – according to antibody tests). This is good for you – even the tiny number who suggest that they might have learned something from what you wrote is an over-estimate of the true number.

        The very best with it – and I very much hope that you go on the attack after you have won this battle.

  • JBB

    I’m sure you’ll have taken advice on this article, but suborning witnesses is as serious a crime as contempt of court and asking witnesses to come forward who can speak to a specific set of facts which you lay out for them *might* be construed as just that.

  • Kerch'ee Kerch'ee Coup

    Whenever I read the words ‘Alphabet Women’ and ‘Jigsaw’, I think ofthe very plausible connection between ‘Google- Ideas’ ,aka Alphabet / Jigsaw ,and the unexplained death of Serena Shim while investigating transfers of sarin and other weapons. Can that be read into the court record?

  • Kangaroo

    I would caveat my response with “I am no lawyer, and your lawyer knows better than I”, however you are facing a judge only trial which means that a “fit up” is readily available without any trouble at all, despite evidence to the contrary. For example your survey provides that one person worked out the jigsaw from your blog, I would assess that one person is sufficient to find you “guilty as charged”.

    Your survey merely indicates that a whole swathe of others should be charged too – don’t hold your breath. Even if the MSM are charged, it will be the masthead not the individual, so a slap on the wrist and a small fine will be the only outcome for them. You, on the other hand, will face a custodial sentence, as a warning to others not to be “acting beyond their station”.

  • Wally jumblatt

    I can only presume the mainstream cowardly press are grateful for you carrying the standard for truth and justice, relieved they can just accept being bullied by their editors’ minders.
    It is a damnation of their ‘profession’ that taking the shilling is all that matters. Even worse that they try and discredit you, under instruction. A pox on them.

    I would think I’m a typical citizen. I had no interest in wasting my time identifying some 3rd rate political figures with alphabet names. As far as I was concerned, they could just as easily invented these women. Sounded like they invented their stories.
    The hypnotic curly hair sounded an interesting distraction, but I presumed that was Henry McLeish’s seventies perm…

    It will be a long slog to clear out the politicians, the infrastructure, the press, the police, and the law, before this nation is ready for independence.

    • Tami

      If anything good comes of this ‘coronavirus’ it will be the taking down of the mainstream media. The more ‘titles’ that go to the wall the better. State propagandist the BBC should be closed down permanently too.

  • Ian

    If the charge of ‘jigsaw identification’ is hard to refute, it is equally hard to prove. If someone has assembled enough pieces to make the identification, then all of the suppliers of the jigsaw pieces are guilty. A jigsaw isn’t a chain, in which the accused has supplied the final piece. It is an overall picture to which all contributors are responsible. If they are not, the accusation is that the defendant has supplied some key piece which the others didn’t. Therefore that piece will be identifiable and subject to scrutiny as to whether it was sufficient to identify the person(s). And that won’t be jigsaw identification, but straightforward identification, even if not overt, and ought to be prosecuted as such. A charge of jigsaw identification would by definition require the suppliers of the crucial pieces to be jointly charged. They cannot claim that the jigsaw is sufficiently complete by one piece from one source.
    However, i assume the whole charade of jigsaw identification is merely the cover for what they really hate – which is the political allegation of the role of individuals within the police and civil service in colluding and conspiring with one another for political ends.
    That can be conveniently swept under the guise of contempt of court. Although it is clearly an explosive charge which goes to the roots of what kind of democracy we live in, since the separation of powers between the executive and the legal system is fundamental to any working definition of democracy and justice.
    The only answer to that question is transparency, accountability and the right of citizens and their representatives to question the exercise of those powers – and get answers. As such, if they go down the route of finding you guilty of a contempt charge, we will have the answer of how those that govern us view the democratic right of citizens to demand transparency from their institutions. And that should concern all of the responsible media and politicians in Scotland.
    Good luck, Craig.

    • Ian

      Also, i meant to add that, although I have no interest in these people’s names myself, I felt it obvious from any report of the witness statements (across all media) that because they stated very specific times, dates and places of meetings and occasions, that absolutely anybody could do a little research and piece it together themselves who they were. Therefore the only ‘jigsaw’ pieces required were supplied freely and openly at the trial and in all the reports. All one had to do to comletely the jigsaw was a little basic research, without the help of any bloggers, columnists or newspapers. If the names are known by a large amount of people that is because it is not possible to give the details of their statements without revealing easily accessible ways of identifying them. The fault, if any, is not with any media, it is with their public statements which they deemed sufficiently serious to make public through the court.

  • John+A

    I followed your postings on the Salmond trial and have no idea who the alfabet sisters are. What did intrigue me was the one with the bouncebackability hair. I would perhaps gues she has African or Caribbean roots, but that is about the only potential identifier I can think of. But as the charges openly included Salmon apparently demonstrating this property of her hair, it would have been remiss not to include this in the court reports.

  • Crispa

    I am not of Scotland and followed the proceedings using different sources including here from general interest. I have no idea from what I read the identities of the prosecution witnesses making the allegations and they would not mean much if I did. The only clue that I can remember from the reports of the court proceedings (and I am deliberately not checking the information as I simply want to state what I recall reading) was in the defence cross examinations of the witnesses, when the trial was being held in public and reported as such. There was a reference at some point to a past meeting involving Nicola Sturgeon set up by a named individual in which one of the witnesses evidently took part. This meeting also formed part of the evidence used in the successful appeal on the legality of the original investigation and as far as i could see, was already in the public domain through the previous case and it would not take anyone with knowledge of the local situation much effort to put two and two together. Of course memory can be unreliable and I might have got it completely wrong.

  • Stonky

    Here’s an intriguing thought. It’s a bit way out there, but it might be worth thinking about.

    The grant of anonymity to the alphabet sisters isn’t some grace and favour papal indulgence that was bestowed upon them personally as a reward for their virtue. It’s supposedly there as a general measure to support victims who might otherwise be reluctant to come forward. So unless they specifically waive their right of anonymity, they should be bound by the court order in the same way that you are, or that I would be. In other words, they have no right to release information that might result in their identification either.

    So all their caterwauling to Gravelli about how simply dweadful it is that the jury didn’t believe them, if it results in their identification, actually puts them in contempt of court too.

    • N_

      No – they can name themselves if they wish. They are all adults. It’s not a “general” measure – it’s specific, to protect individual accusers.

      It’s all hypocritical. The authorities don’t give a damn about encouraging real rape victims and assault victims to come forward.

  • Joe Mellon

    I could not work out identities, so I asked someone.
    Scotland is a small country: anyone who wants to know already knows, and probably a lot of people who aren’t even interested. Certainly every journalist or lawyer.
    We are in a Kafkaesque situation, or more exactly a Stalinist one. Power doesn’t want anyone to say publicly what everyone knows because then the powerful would have their collective arses out the window.
    I suspect that this whole process is all about creating the space in which the Lord Advocate and CPS (the Scottish Government) can commit crass breaches of their obligation to uphold the law by prosecuting (effectively) the Scottish Government for perjury and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

    • Joe Mellon

      …that is “Ga’an yersel Craig’ – why prosecute you? Because they are running scared.
      But it an extremely stupid thing to do. They are doubling down on a bet they have already disasterously lost twice.
      They might think they can find a compliant judge: but maybe they can’t. And even if they do it will go to the Supreme Court, and eeven the European Court. They cannot win.
      If you need more money, make another call, and I for one will be happy to contribute. You are not a wee man they can bully.
      The biggest danger I think is that someone will decide that it would be very convenient if you had a heart attack…

      • Joe Mellon

        If they choose that route (hope for a ‘compliant’ judge):
        – the Scottish judges are pretty upright, and especially they are keen to uphold the integrity of the Scottish courts.
        – even a judge inclined to listen favourably to the prosecution will be well aware that it will go to appeal in a process which would last years. Anything less than a judgement of the highest integrity would leave that judges reputation in tatters. Every walk through Parliament Hall or visit to an Edinburgh club will become a nightmare.
        – even the indictment has already sunk a few reputations.
        – Even in the very unlikely event that the prosecution goes all the way to the European Court and is allowed or upheld, the ‘cabal’ will have achieved exactly what they want to avoid: they will be excoriated in public and in detail over years.
        Could such a stupid crew ever successfully achieve Scottish independence? I for one very much doubt it. Long term they will be loss.
        They are being enormously stupid.

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