Authoritarianism is Shoddy 397

Well, it is really happening. It is something of a shock to see yourself listed as a criminal for writing the truth. I have a tiny extra glimpse now into the way my friend Julian has been feeling.

Three appeal court judges even at the procedural hearing – though not unheard of, that is not normal. The state is sparing no resources on this; in a sense I am flattered.

There will be no jury at the eventual trial, and this worries me. Not least because the indictment (called a “petition”) contains within itself evidence that this process is a stitch up. Please help me here, and read paras 49 to 56 of the indictment after reading this explanation.

Para 49 of the indictment is an utter garble. It states that I sent a twitter message beginning “It is respectfully submitted…”.

I sent no such twitter message. Para 50 is missing. This is not a misnumbering, para 50 really is missing. I assume my twitter message, intended to be quoted at para 49, and whatever led in to the Crown’s argument beginning “it is respectively submitted” were in the missing section.

At para 53 the same thing happens again. It explicitly states that I published another tweet starting: “it is respectfully submitted that”.

I published no such tweet. Again the indictment does not give the actual text of the tweet complained of, even though it claims to do so. This time two paragraphs are clearly missing, and again this is not just a misnumbering, because of the missing material. It jumps from 53 to 56.

In short, the indictment from paras 49 to 56 is an inoperable jumble, with three paras missing from two different locations and which does not even contain – though it states it does – the very tweets which form part of the alleged offence with which I am charged.

You may argue this does not matter, and clerical errors are easily corrected. But that is to miss the point. I used to prepare official documents in my 20 year diplomatic career, from ministerial replies to members of the public to fully fledged international treaties.

A Diplomatic Note to a foreign government, which has a legal status, might be the best comparator from my work to this indictment or petition. I always scrupulously proof read every one I sent before signing. It is unthinkable that a Diplomatic Note would be sent containing not one but a series of major, material errors.

Is this document any less solemn? It is an indictment on which they are attempting to brand me a criminal and potentially send me to prison for up to two years. It is signed by Alex Prentice, Depute Advocate General on behalf of the Lord Advocate, and by the senior judge, Lord Turnbull.

But one thing is abundantly clear. Neither Alex Prentice nor Lord Turnbull can have carefully read through the document before they signed it. I do not believe for one moment that they would knowingly sign off a document containing such major errors. The judge, in particular, is meant to weigh carefully the matter to see if there really is a case to answer before he signs the Crown’s “petition”. But, I say it again, plainly Lord Turnbull has not actually read through it; or he would never have signed this garbled mess.

I am advised that it may be “contempt of court” for me to point out that Lord Turnbull signed this without reading it. But when a law makes it illegal to point out a blindingly obvious fact, then the law is an ass.

If Lord Turnbull does not wish to be criticised, he should try doing his job properly and actually paying attention to what he signs.

Contempt is the right word. I have a great deal of contempt for anybody who would send me such a portentous legal document rotten through with utterly careless error which would have been spotted by even a cursory reading of the document.

They did not read it. The judge who approved it did not read it.

Neither of them bothered to read the indictment or petition because it had already been decided to “get” Craig Murray and it therefore did not matter what the document actually said. The content of the charges is immaterial to them. Otherwise, they would have read them before signing. There can only be two reasons for that failure. The first is incompetence. The second is corruption. In a sense, it does not matter which it is in this case.

A state which is turning to authoritarianism to crush dissent does not need to be very careful about matters of process.

The failure of both Prentice and Turnbull to read before signing is not important for the mistakes in the document, which can be remedied by a new document. It is important because of the clear indication of attitude. This prosecution is abuse of process, a clear Article Six violation under the European Convention on Human Rights.

A series of facts make this abundantly plain. The abuse of process lies in this combined with the extraordinary selectivity in prosecuting me, when others who can be objectively proven to have much more effectively produced “jigsaw identification” are not prosecuted. There is a very clear political motivation behind the selection of who to prosecute and who not to prosecute.

When you put together the facts that there is overwhelming evidence that mainstream media journalists were more guilty of “jigsaw identification” than I, that systematic police action is being taken to harass only supporters of Alex Salmond, and that they don’t even care what the indictment to be used against me actually says, the overall picture becomes very, very clear.

Authoritarianism doesn’t have to worry about mistakes in the indictment, because it can just smash you in the face with the jackboot. That is what is happening here.

My own view is that they were so keen to “get” Craig Murray they just signed without any proper scrutiny whatsoever. I don’t see any other conclusion. Do you?

They do not have the excuse that this is routine. Major prosecutions for contempt in Scotland are extremely rare – the last one was Aamer Anwar about a decade ago (it failed).

So why could the state be so keen to prosecute Craig Murray, that is doesn’t even care what is in the indictment, or even if it is drawn up with the most basic level of competence? Well, I refer you to this excellent letter setting out the fact that the state is only acting against those who defended the innocent Alex Salmond, even though his detractors were much more in contempt of court. And I refer you to the Panelbase opinion poll which showed that very substantially more people who know the identities of the accusers, learnt them from the mainstream media.

I remain clear that I identified nobody. If I had wanted to, I would have done so openly. I have never been noted for cowardice.

The other accusation, that I wrote articles stating that the prosecution of Alex Salmond was a fit-up, is something I state again here. It is a proper exercise of my freedom of speech under Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Actually, you don’t have to go past the very first sentence of the indictment to understand what is happening here. It reads “On 23 January 2019, Alexander Elliott Anderson Salmond was arrested by police officers in relation to a number of incidents that had taken place in Scotland.”

“That had taken place”.
Not “alleged to have taken place”.
“That had taken place”.
And Prentice wrote this, and Turnbull signed it off, after the acquittal.

After independent witnesses gave eye witness accounts that several of the incidents had not taken place at all. After it was demonstrated in court that the accuser of the most serious offence was not even present when she claimed the offence took place.

After the jury threw out the pile of ordure that the very same Alex Prentice as prosecuting counsel presented to them.

“That had taken place”. No, most of the incidents had not taken place at all, and none in the form alleged.

Right at the start, this wording gives away the motivation. The conspirators have still not psychologically processed the fact their attack on Alex Salmond was foiled by the jury. The Crown is now coming at Mark Hirst and at me in an effort to get some kind of victory from this massive waste of public resources. The conspirators seek to assuage their massive humiliation in the failure of a prosecution that stank and quite obviously ought never to have been brought.

I am not going to pipe down under this abuse of process and attack on freedom of speech. On the contrary, this will be a reasoned, forceful and very public resistance.


The hearing on 10 June is supposed to be public, but it will be virtual because of coronavirus. While it is a case management hearing, I shall nevertheless be grateful if you are able to “attend” virtually, as I am very keen indeed that I am not stitched up out of the public eye. Please send an email requesting access to the virtual hearing on 10 June to [email protected]. I am very keen as many people do this as possible. Journalists please in addition copy in [email protected] for accreditation.

Secondly, many people come to this blog through social media and I am currently suffering a very high level of suppression, on Facebook and especially on Twitter. Rather than just retweet and share any soical media post that brought you here, (which may appear on the face to have worked but the dissemination will be suppressed), I would be very grateful if you could also write your own new posting and put a link. If you have your own blog or access to one, a commendation of this post with a link would be very welcome, even if it is not your normal policy. And finally of course, the entire post is free as always to copy, republish and translate as you wish.


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397 thoughts on “Authoritarianism is Shoddy

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  • Piotr+Berman

    After some thinking, I concluded that the court order was contradictory, at least if we assume that the court should pay some attention to public interest.

    On one hand we have the public interest in a discourse on issues of political importance, with implication about aptitude and inclination of public official, elected by the public or nominated by elected officials. To what extend they follow their petty interests that is contrary to the interests that large segments of the public perceive? The very central concept of informed voting requires that such discourse can take place. This is not the question of minors who can be stigmatized and bullied, and who by themselves are not vitally important to the public at large.

    On the other hand, there is an interest in preserving anonymity of accusers that presumably has some justification (the accused person has similar concerns, if you ask me). At this point, the very publication of the accusations makes huge breaches in their anonymity, breaches so huge that innocent details can “de-anonymize them”. After all, the public knowns a lot more that “in a certain institution in the United Kingdom something happened”.

    The only way to protect the anonymity would be to make the investigation confidential, and the trial secret, with no disclosure whatsoever in the event of non-guilty verdict. Otherwise a neighbor would know that person Delta worked in the place known from the press at the time mentioned in the press, and on the days known from the press leaves home with time and attire suggesting going to court. This solution was possible.

    However, we see an attempt of conducting a secret show trial. Easy to do in Stalinist Soviet Union, where as a matter of course the press writes only what the authorities wishes to write, but quite contrary to the “western liberal concept of freedom” that is presumably included in the unwritten constitution of the Kingdom.

    • Bethany

      The press should butt out of all trials and court proceedings. It serves no ones interest, certainly not the accused. As a senior court official once told me being splashed all over the papers was “part of the punishment”. The courts actively collude in this, anyway. i.e. furnishing journalists with complaints/indictments, etc. The council even furnish journalists with the cases to be called in the ‘taxi court’.

  • Naila

    Hi Craig, sorry to hear you’re now a target like those you’ve defended in your work.

    I plan to attend the virtual hearing, the email you gave for the Scottish court I think has an additional full-stop at the end, or the second email address is missing one.

    Good luck. We will be watching.

    • Colin Alexander

      Naila, I have double checked. The full stop in the article at the end of the email address is simply a punctuation full stop at the end of the sentence. So, there is no full stop AFTER uk in the email address.

      But, don’t take my word for it: the same email address can be found here in this document:

      It shows the email address highlighted as a blue hypertext link. If you right click on it you can copy the email address: the full stop at the end is not included as part of the email address. As again, the full stop is just a punctuation mark at the end of a sentence.

  • Giyane

    You mean this petition is from outside the court, not from the court. It has been allowed as a third party request, maybe from the police or from the AS prosecution, and can be summarily dismissed in the first few seconds.

    The fact that it has been allowed by the court instead being disallowed is a method of letting justice be seen to be done, which allows the petitioners a means of winding Craig and his followers up and making us look silly.

    And also throws a few armchairs in the way of the alphabets being prosecuted for perjury., losing their jobs and having their names and photos splattered across The Sun.

    • James

      Giyane – there really is something about this that doesn’t add up.

      I looked at the document Craig Murray posted (a while back when he posted it) and it says that the petition is by `The Right Honourable JAMES WOLFFE, Queen’s Counsel, Her Majesty’s Advocate’.

      It really is incredibly badly written.
      Part of me suspects that Craig Murray is a pawn in a different game – whoever let it through did so in order to make James Wolffe look like an idiot in a very public way – and Craig Murray is simply collateral damage in this venture.

      Honestly – I’d expect the first week of the first year of a law degree to teach the students something about clear writing when cooking up a petition – get the main point down, skillfully getting through the eye of the needle as quickly as possible – keep it short and sweet.

      The judge issued the following court order – this tweet here gives information which violates the court order – therefore CM is in contempt.
      But it isn’t written like this, is it? It looks more like the work of someone who writes soap operas for the TV rather than someone who has been trained to write precise legal documents.
      It looks like bollox pure and simple and I suspect they let it through in order to make the author look stupid in a public way.

      • Giyane


        Queen’s counsel surely only means someone temporarily recruited on a zero hours contract by the prosecution. It doesn’t mean she has stroked him through his tights while he was bending down.

        They’ve recruited the online services of a bent beak whose office floozie has cobbled the petition together between noontime sherry and lying on his/ her back thinking of Scotland. Their invoice for services rendered amounting to a mere hundred thousand pounds.

      • michael norton

        After the 2007 election, the new First Minister Alex Salmond decided that Lord Advocate would no longer attend the Scottish Cabinet, stating he wished to “de-politicise” the post.

        • michael norton

          So, this suggests that the newest First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has reversed the policy of Mr.Salmond
          to “re-politicise” the post of Lord Advocate.

          • Giyane

            Might be a good idea to de- feminist-politics-ise it. Sounds a dodgy idea to me.

      • Bill Thomson

        Wolffe, can he as co-chair of Victims Taskforce be expected to be impartial if he is confused as to who the victim in this matter is, along with the rest of the members of the committee? Any aquittal would undermine the assumptions on which their work is premised.

    • Giyane


      James Wolff iQC s or was Scotland’s top legal dog.
      Politically maybe the opposite of Craig Murray.
      But the this is a political trial.

      • James

        Goodness – thanks – I just looked him up on wikipedia. Someone with his credentials can come up with a petition like that? Doesn’t say much for the Scottish judiciary, does it?

        Yes – it is a political trial.

        I still expect Craig Murray to be acquitted – since convicting him would be an act of extreme stupidity. I do accept that that hasn’t stopped them before …..

        Anyway – I sent the email (and got an `out of hours’ response – so my request has been registered). I used my work address so that they’ll know my identity. The more people who do this the better – the larger the audience the less chance they have of doing something utterly stupid.

        • Giyane


          Who paid james Wolffe to concoct this ridiculous petition? Boris or the Royals.
          Cui bono?

          I see the EU has set out the ground rules for Scotland to be a member. Use the Euro and join the queue. The rent for Balmoral and the nuclear facilities will bring the deficit down.
          They may as well take England as far as Manchester as well because any Inquiry into vote rigging will soon show them which side their bread is buttered on.

          The shoddy drafting of this petition probably indicates that the Scottish Judiciary are just going through the motions to keep Westminster happy and then they’ll probably toss the cabre of the petition like a cruise missile as far as they can up Westminster’s backside.

          • James

            Giyane – we don’t need to be so imaginative – the reality is worse.

            I didn’t know who James Wolffe was until today.
            He wrote the petition – he must think that absolutely everything in it is an example of contempt of court.
            It is very worrying and sinister for basic freedom of speech that every single blog expressing anti-Nicola Sturgeon opinion is judged `contempt of court’ by the top Scottish legal guy.

            In my opinion there are exactly two tweets – which are mentioned after a *very* long rigmarole which could possibly give the names of some alphabet sisters (and even then, in my opinion, only to people who already knew the situation very well and who could figure it out from other sources). If it had been restricted to these two tweets then I could have understood it.
            But your man James Wolffe clearly thinks that absolutely everything in that petition is an example of contempt of court. And it is quite alarming that such a fellow could have risen to the post of lord-high-big-cheese within the Scottish legal system.

          • Giyane


            Politics means taking a ride in somebody else’s Rolls Royce.
            I very much doubt he thinks any of that, but the pockets of the Queen are quite wide, and the pockets of the USUKIS partnership in crime are most unnecessarily wider.

            Free ride in a Chevrolet, unsafe at any speed.

          • Margaret

            We like to speak Peter from Thailand thought this would be in interest to me

        • Bill Thomson

          There is no doubt the Petition was prepared by a junior cut and paster, probably furth of these borders.

          • James

            Not clear to me. I’m building up a picture of this James Wolffe chappie and it isn’t very nice.

            He’s a product of the anti-discrimination policy used when making appointments to position of Lord Advocate – they’re no longer allowed to discriminate on grounds of ability.

            I get the impression that he is well in with the Nicola Sturgeon set, though. That might have helped.

            The petition is probably all his own work.

          • Piotr+Berman

            Senior cut-pasters may not be aware of some tricks that allow to re-number entries in a numbered list. “Literacy” of a senior may be arrested at “pre-technology” stage.

          • James

            Piotr+Berman – I don’t really see the problem with the numbering here. Yes – I think we all agree that the natural numbers with the natural ordering would be the preferred numbering system for normal people, but what is wrong with taking a subset of the natural numbers? They have used a totally ordered subset of the natural numbers. After all, 53 < 56, so they present their points in an order that is consistent with this ordering, so what's the problem?

  • lysias

    Did the Scottish government make the wrong decision about the Nike conference in Edinburgh because they were preoccupied by the Salmond trial?

  • Saravella

    The e-mail address for the virtual hearing has a capital ‘J’ in judicial – ie [email protected]. The e-mail you have provided has a lower-case ‘j’ in judicial – ie [email protected].

    As user names are case sensitive this might be the reason people are not receiving any response from the latter.

    Best wishes to you and your family.

    • Cascadian

      Case is irrelevant in e-mail addresses (which are a form of URL) – regardless of what case you use it will all be flattened down to lower case by the e-mail agent on your desktop before it processes the sending of it.

  • N_

    To judge from what’s been done to Mark Hirst, if Piers Morgan had posted this tweet in Scotland about the Scottish government, he’d be in the dock! (He wrote “Remember their names… how the ministers supported or didn’t support lying Cummings today… ” above a table of cabinet ministers showing which ones have and have not tweeted in favour of Dominic Cummings during the ongoing Durhamgate.)

    Morgan has also said he no longer supports Trump. I’m getting a whiff of the CIA here.

    • Giyane


      Cominic Dummings didn’t have the foresight to see that his continuing to work would create a problem for his family, or he didn’t have agreement of his family to live separately so that he could carry on working.

      This is the man who turned out to be a cardboard cut-out of an advisor, like those pictures of police constables in petrol stations, when he ramped up his racist agenda with anti-black and anti-age eugenics in public and online. What a total waste of space he has been.

      I might be a viking but my heart’s in the wrong place. Tekus as tha findus. I’m as good a Nazi as any man.
      3 uses for newspaper. Fish chips. Reading in the privy. Covering you doodoos with a sheet ready for the next person to come in.

      Thank you piers Morgan for participating in the Dominic Cummings publicity campaign. He needs to build up his public profile after being seen as the theorist behind the Let them die in their care homes campaign

      • N_

        @Giyane – Cummings himself is behind the idea that he “broke lockdown twice”. This is a fine example of the use of CONTRAST as a persuasive technique: in this case the spreading of a false allegation to make the person look good when it doesn’t stick and falls apart. You will find this technique described in books by Robert Cialdini (that all serious students of persuasion and propaganda have read) and by Alastair (“Lord”) Macalpine on Macchiavelli.

        As well as the principle of contrast, it also uses “framing” and “anchoring”. In particular, notice that it frames things in terms of lockdown rather than in terms of quarantine which is different and far stricter. (Whoever didn’t notice that framing was MISLED, which is OK if they are reading this comment, because now they have learnt how powerful the standard techniques of propaganda can be.)

        Cummings clearly has enemies on the right, including media figures such as Piers Morgan (the nouveau), but we knew that. He has strong supporters and allies too. Grant Shapps is a moron, but there are other aspects of how this story is running that indicate that powerful levers are being wielded to strengthen Cummings’s position. At the time of writing I would not like to predict how it will go. Cummings may already have his next post lined up – it is possible.

        • Giyane


          Basically he’s a criminal helping a liar.
          Not unlike Cameron and Hague or Blair and Brown. Thanks. I know the feeling well but it’s good to have an explanation.

          The greatest criminal scams of our time, Islamism and Chinese surrogacy of Western manufacturing are similar. The Erdogan- Barzani team that made Daesh and the World Bank- Globalisation team.

          Anyway , enough of all that bollocks, it’s Eid , and it’s Lunchtime! Peace and good will to all!

          • N_

            @Giyane – Bonne fête to you today!

            For all the thousands of “tweets” and comments that internet users have made about Dominic Cummings, very few have spotted the words that dare printed on the lanyard he wears around his neck with his ID card hanging from it.

            The words are these: “IN GOD WE TRUST. ALL OTHERS WE MONITOR”… And guess what – that’s the slogan of a foreign intelligence agency, US Naval Intelligence. Talk about “in your face”!

          • N_

            It is quite funny that the scrum of reporters harassing Dominic Cummings outside his home are themselves breaking the 2-metre rule…as they ask him whether he thinks there’s one law for him and another for everybody else.

            He has categorically denied returning to Durham in April.

    • Spencer Eagle

      Morgan has long been a shill, remember the fake Iraq torture photos of 2004 which resulted in his sacking as editor of the Mirror? It was all a government led black op from the very outset and he was part of it. At the time there were hundreds of real pictures in circulation showing British soldiers abusing Iraqi prisoners and civilians, the Mirror operation convinced the public all such photos were all fake and had a chilling effect on the media preventing publication of the genuine images of abuse. How do you think such an unlikable character was given so many opportunities in the media? That was the deal.

      • Pyewacket

        Spencer, and whilst also at the Mirror, his alleged involvement in phone hacking. Which, I think, all blew up much later, after his departure.

        • N_

          Morgan was taking the Trump shilling. How do you Morganwatchers assess his reverse ferreting on Trump? I thought it suggested that CIA guys, perhaps working with a replacement Republican candidate but that is not the only possibility, want Trump out or at least they know he will be out and people like the CIA like to back a winner.

          Morgan is a mid-Atlantic figure who reminds me in that sense of David Frost although unlike Frost he would not be allowed near the family of the Duke of Norfolk, ain’t in Frost’s (self-made) money bracket, and doesn’t even have the small amount of decency that Frost has which came out in his defence of Nick Leeson. Morgan is in the relatively small demographic about whom it is said that “even his friends think he is a c***.”

      • N_

        @Spencer – How do you assess Morgan’s role in Durhamgate? I’m open to the idea that Morgan is a shill. He certainly is no fool where propaganda is concerned, and has no moral scruples either but he’s hardly alone in that. What do you see as the intended effect of his ‘work” in this affair, and is it being achieved?

        • Anthony

          He’s holding the Tories to account for their disastrous handling of the pandemic. That’s enraged a few..

          • Giyane


            There is no such a thing as a Tory any more, same as there is no such thing as a British car mode.

            This government might have been assembled in the UK, but the ballots might have been constructed from algorithms anywhere in the world including Boris’s favoured software merchants in Patelistan.

            How come all modern cars all look exactly the same? Or as Steve Bell caricatures Sir Kier Starmer telling Boris : ” We are here to serve “

          • Deb O'Nair

            The people running the country today, through the ERG and thence through the Tory party. are reps of the Brexit cartel. Basically the Brexit Party is in charge except nobody in the country elected them in December, when the GE was thrown by the corporate media.

        • Spencer Eagle

          I think Morgan has been reminded by his masters that he owes them for his media opportunities gained from the fake photo deal and that he was and remains their ‘boy’, he’s just following orders on the Trump about turn and the attack on Cummings.

    • pete

      I think I get your point N_. If, as he said he had contact with an infected person he should not have been travelling, he should have been strictly self quarantining. Breaking lock-down and breaking quarantine are not the same thing. By muddying the debate he has confused the issue.
      If, as has been said, he is comfortable with the concept of eugenics, then his visit to his parents is entirely consistent with furthering the notion of “letting them die in their care homes” as Giyene put it. A school of philosophy I am both unacquainted with and which seems, on the face of it, is as repulsive as it is grotesque.

    • N_

      I can’t understand the Abba “Dancing Queen” reference in the Durhamgate story. Is somebody saying his countermeasures against electronic listening were rubbish? Less excitingly they may just be saying “we’ve got you” (“all your base are belong to us”). And why did his father call the police?

      • N_

        The photo of the police knocking at Dominic Cummings’s door looks ominous.

        The Daily Mail have published what’s close to an obituary, bylined to Tom Bower. FFS! What’s is “FFS” is not that it’s been published, but the organ that it has appeared in – the Heil!

        “Johnson’s initial offers to Cummings to join him in Downing Street were rejected. So Johnson cycled across Islington in North London to Cummings’s home to hear what he described as a list of ‘terrorist demands’.”

        Strong language indeed.

        This bit is hyperbole though (and the “explanation” clause is unconvincing): “He will fight to the end for Dominic Cummings because without him, he fears his ambitions will evaporate.”

        Johnson falling over this may be too much to hope for. But Gove…

  • N_

    I don’t think the Sturgeon crackdown has much to do with independence, but can’t resist observing that if Scotland were independent then one defensive measure that Craig would be able to take would be to walk across the Coldstream bridge into England and then fight any extradition attempt on the grounds that it amounted to political persecution.

    • Piotr+Berman

      You assume that the extradition treaty would have such a clause, even that both governments would hate it. I would recommend a ferry to Dublin.

  • Sean Lamb

    I had a look at the offending tweet of March 29. I could only identify a complainant’s name because dozens of people were naming her in the responses.

    The person they named is NOT a powerful woman in Scottish government circles (and hasn’t been for some years) and hence the people who named her in their replies were not extracting that information from your tweet rather from a shared knowledge that is widely known within certain circles. In other words if you already knew the identity of one of the complainants, you could recognize who you referred to, if you didn’t, it was a mystery.

    And when you do research the person that was being named in responding tweets, it does make the whole Salmond accusations look very curious indeed.

    Good luck

    • Ian T-W

      Just because other people have named a certain individual in a response does not mean that that individual was correctly named. It could be that they were mistaken. It could also be that they were deliberately planting information hoping to result in a charge of contempt.

  • Sean Lamb

    I had a look at the April 2 tweet of regarding Ms Watt. It is possible that it might mean something to a very small number of people, but not to the wider public. Clearly the purpose of the tweet was not to aid in jigsaw identification but to point out the strength of the evidence indicating Salmond’s innocence.

    The point of suppression orders is to prevent the name of exposure of identities in the wider media, inevitably making a complaint and holding a trial will always some people with inside knowledge being able to make identifications.

    There needs to be a balance found between protecting identities and transparency in legal processes. Setting the bar that someone somewhere might be able to identify someone is too inhibitory towards the needs of openness in a democratic society

    • Ian T-W

      Precisely. If there is certain information which the court believes should not be made public because it might identify certain individuals who, rightly or wrongly, are protected from identification, then it should be incumbent upon the court to specify which information can or cannot be published. Otherwise it becomes a wild guessing game as to what is fair play. And if the authorities do not immediately clamp down on one source where offending material has been published, inadvertently or otherwise, it would make others think that publishing such information was fair game.

  • SA

    There is another blatant example of shoddy authoritarianism. Dominic Cummings flouts the lockdown rules after his wife experiences covid-19 symptoms and travels over 250 miles by car to stay with or near family in Durham. The rules are clear: stay at home if you have symptoms in order to save lives. This was a government instruction and reiterated by desperate healthcare staff. It was not difficult to interpret this particular instruction. However apparently if you are DC then you can interpret it any way you like. I make the rules so I can also interpret them and flout them, who is going to be my judge if we have a thumping majority in parliament?

    • nevermind

      Maybe it will take a nurse to tell him to pack his bags? SA, somehow it feels as if his story of his journey’s north had mpre than one reason.

    • jake

      You won’t find it trending anywhere but there are Drs, nurses and care workers out there saying that if he doesn’t resign they will.

    • KR

      Glaxosmithkline have an office in Barnard Castle.
      2-days after DC visited Barnard Castle GSK, by coincidence, signed a contract with a French pharmaceutical company (Sanofi) to produce a covid vaccine.

  • quasi_verbatim

    Sir Walter certainly started something when he had George IV parade in a tartan skirt.
    One more Hard Scotchit putsch from the ScotNazis and we be will be free at last.

  • Ingwe

    Using the thread’s title-‘Authotitarianism is Shoddy’ as justification for my post, I see that the authorities have blocked Tony Greenstein’s blog. I went to the site to check his comments on current issues only to find it blocked. The notice from my internet provider, Virgin says the site is blocked due to unsuitable content. So now we are beginning to see the gradual closing down of all public dissent. I’d be afraid, Mr Murray, very afraid!

      • Jordan

        Neither is it blocked from my Virgin address, though some onion router exit nodes are ignored (i.e. hang)

    • Mary

      OK here Ingwe. Must be Virgin policy your end. Virgin Media is now owned by Liberty Global. Well named, not.
      ‘US billionaire John Malone’s cable group, Liberty Global, has agreed to buy the UK’s Virgin Media in a cash and stock deal worth $23.3bn (£15bn). The deal will create the world’s largest broadband company, with 25 million customers in 14 countries.6 Feb 2013
      Liberty Global to buy Virgin Media for $23.3bn – BBC News’

      This is the most recent post on Tony Greenstein’s blog

      ‘Socialist, anti-Zionist, anti-racist
      Friday, 22 May 2020
      Jacob de Haan, the first victim of a Zionist Political Assassination was a Gay anti-Zionist Jew, the representative of Jerusalem’s Orthodox Haredi Jews
      The murder was ordered by Yitzhak ben Zvi, who became Israel’s second President – Zionism has always feared Jewish anti-Zionists because we are the living proof of their lies ‘

      PS Netanyahu’s trial for corruption charges is starting today.

    • nevermind

      just been on his azvasas blog and its open, so is the Tony blog. Try again Ingwe

      • Ingwe

        Well, happy to say I can now access the Tony Greenstein blog.

        I’d seen the last post on 22nd May so wondered what content Virgin deemed offensive and entitling them to block it for a long time this morning. I am not tech savvie so will need to read a lot more before messing about with DNS settings etc. But thanks all for the advice.

        Enjoy your weekend, if you can, with all this Cummings tripe.

  • Republicofscotland

    I’m still unsure Craig as to why you have no right to be tried by jury solemn cases in the High and Sheriff courts I’m led to believe have juries. Unless of course your case isn’t a solemn one,, however if it’s the case that they’re attempting to try without a jury due the Covid-19 virus and the lockdown, wouldn’t it be prudent for your defence to try and apply for an extension, the lockdown removal phases will begin next Thursday in Scotland.

    Another possible route I think for you to acquire a jury would for your legal representatives to ask the Lord Advocate or the Procurator Fiscal. I and I suppose many other in here fear that going into court without the parity of a jury will leave you at the mercy of the establishment. I hope you have a very good pleasing defence lined up.

    Trial without a jury

    “1.7 The Government believes that it is length of trial, rather than the complexity of evidence presented during trial that poses the hardest challenges to jurors – whose lives and livelihoods can be severely disrupted by the requirement in certain cases to sit for weeks on end. This chapter considers judicial comment on this point and looks at possible options to jury trial, including conducting proceedings by a tribunal of judges. It points to capacity and cost problems associated with this option. It explores the use of substitute jurors, particularly for long cases where juror attrition may be a problem and where the risk of trial discontinuity needs to be mitigated. It invites comments on various questions associated with substitute jurors. It links to an issue discussed in chapter 7 around the court’s discretion to allow a trial to continue even if the quorum is breached and invites views on whether that discretion would have particular value in the context of long trials and how it might be exercised”

    Could it not be argued quite successfully, from the above that yours is not a long trial and therefore a jury would be appropriate. Also most European countries has a jury of around nine people, the Scottish legal establishment seems to approve of the idea of reducing the amount of jurors in Scotland due to availability, it may be unconventional but I’d imagine if offered you’d accept nine jurors over no jurors.

    • Giyane


      USUKIS created , funded, trained and commanded Islamic State. Daesh conducted daily trials at the whim of unqualified jurists. This has gone to Tory heads. The election coup is as fake as the Daesh coup. Tories realised that nobody can prove their involvement in the creation of Daesh. Turkey, Iraq, Syria Saudi Arabia all regard journalists as spies and execute them without trial.

      The policy of this rigged government is to do exactly the same with journalists in the UK as Islamic State in libya or Iraq. If you remember , the US declared that the national boundaries were irrelevant. The Tories are now saying that UK law is irrelevant and that the exceptionalism laws of Usukis prevail over local justice.

      I think it might be time to arm ourselves for rebellion.
      The coincidence between the rigged election and the arrival of covid 19 + restrictions means logically that USUKIS, deployed this weapon in exactly the same way as they released terror on the Muslim world.

      In UK justice people who make false sexual allegations are arrested and people who expose their crimes are rewarded with respect. We are no longer dealing with UK justice, but USUKIS EXCEPIONALIST JUSTICE.

      • Republicofscotland


        I don’t think the Scottish judicial system is completely f#cked just yet otherwise Alex Salmond would be spending the rest of his days behind bars by now. However I do believe that there’s an almighty struggle going on within it?

        Craig is unfortunately coming up against a judge and a prosecutor that in my opinion have political agendas that mesh with part of Scotland’s governments and that of the government South of the border.

        • Giyane


          How would you feel if the Northern makeover from Labour to Trash was as a result of Cummings offering the Muslim supporters of Islamism a redoubling of diplomatic and logistical support against Assad if they switched to Tory?

          How would you feel if you knew theis bailout was funded by those same Saudi murderers of journalist Kashoggi on exactly the same promise.

          You wanna eat Saudi blood money? Scottish Justice, not just f#cked but dumped in a shallow grave , and her mobile hacked by the MSM.

        • James

          Republicofscotland – who is the judge (or who are the three judges) in this case? This isn’t clear to me. Is Lady Dorian (the judge from the Salmond case) one of them?

          • Mississipi Burning

            Lord Turnbull, Lady Brindley (CEO of Rape Crisis) and recently appointed Lord Prentice of Brigadoon, it could go either way 😉

          • James

            Mississipi burning – thanks – unfortunately, the three you have listed are quite capable of making complete tits of themselves without any shame. So it will probably be a conviction, which will be overturned on the appeal.
            This will really make the Scottish judiciary look corrupt and incompetent.

  • Jm

    Andrew Sabisky and Dominic Cummings…

    Ironic that two so-called Tory SuperForecasters couldn’t foresee very far at all.

    Quelle surprise.

  • Willie

    Apologies for changing the subject and for the use of intemperate language but I’ve just listened to that piece of shit they call the Prime Minister defend Dominic Cummings.

    Never have I heard a dissembling come bare faced liar like this man was on national and international travel. People have borne the travel restrictions with great forbearance, they have been denied the opportunity to spend the last hours with dying relatives, they have been denied the opportunity to attend the funeral of loved ones and this bastard defends a man who at the centre of government in London had to drive 260 miles to get alleged child care.

    It’s fucking anarchy. This is not Government and it’s time that Johnson and his ilk were gone. In Scotland, save for going independent they do not have the power to make him gone. In England they do.

    Until then all those who have lost dear one, who have been denied access to their loved ones during their passing, who have been denied access to their funerals, they will just have to suck it up from a government like this.

    So suck it up fuckers, suck it fucking up, and I do apologise for the language. It would make you cry. It should not be like this.

    • Giyane


      Simple remedy for listening to liars. Just reverse or put a not in the sentence.: ” D C was not legally or morally entitled to break his own covid guidelines. I do not give him my full support. “. So much more relaxing, but Boris Johnson is one of those people who are addicted to lying, oblivious to the stress it causes, and very appreciative of the silencing effect on his listeners as they try to disentangle his tripe. Everybody hates him , and D C , not just you. But their biggest lies are not to us, but to the God that created them and Who instructed them to tell the truth.

    • Tom74

      My thoughts too, Willie – it quite beggars belief to hear Johnson defending Cummings when it was Johnson himself endlessly tweeting to the British people to ‘Stay Home’, don’t visit family, exercise once a day etc.
      I don’t know whether it’s any consolation or not but I suspect Johnson isn’t calling shots and hasn’t been since his untimely illness. it is also pretty clear from the behaviour of Cummings and Ferguson that public health is likely only a smokescreen for other objectives.
      Unfortunately I don’t think we dispossessed in England have any more power to get rid of Johnson than those in Scotland. Anarchy may indeed be the result.

  • Joe Mellon

    Craig what you are really being charged with is not “Contempt of Court”, but – a novum in Scots Law – “Contempt of Prosecution”.
    Alex Prentice brought a ridiculous case to court. It had no ‘legs’ and fell over in court. Deeply embarrassing for the Deputy Advocate General himself and the CSP.
    Rationally not only must his career be over, but the perjurers and those who organized their testimony must be charged with conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. Unfortunately that would mean the CSP would have to charge both itself and the police, as it is incredible that experienced lawyers and policemen would not notice the flaws and inconsistencies in their case. But the DAG has decided to double down on his errors.
    This can only go one of two ways:
    – the case is quietly dropped, some technical excuse is given, and Alex Prentice decides to ‘spend more time with his family’ after a decent interval
    – the case goes to court much to the embarrasment of the Scottish justice system and the police, and even worse in the case of a positive judgement for the DAG, it then goes to the Supreme Court and/or the European Court dragging not just Prentice but the entire Scottish legal system through the mire for perhaps years to come.
    I hope the DAG knows where his duty lies.
    And once again – the base issue is: “Contempt of Prosecution” is not a known offence in Scots Law.

    • Joe Mellon

      …lest there be any doubt I am NOT alleging malfeasance: I think we are dealing with simple arrogance and incompetence.

  • N_

    Listen up. It puzzled me for weeks why the media kept going on about Dominic Cummings running down Downing Street on 27 March. Now we know. The interesting point wasn’t that a man ran down the road; it was where the man was going.

    Now the media keep alleging he made a trip to Barnard Castle on 12 April. Those who aren’t familiar with that part of England may think it’s a castle and that he went there for a picnic with his wife and son. Well it is a castle, but it is also a town, located about 20-25 miles away from Durham. AND GUESS WHAT’S THERE….

    a huge plant owned by Glaxo Smith Kline, the pharmaceutical multinational that is currently trying to develop (and sell) an extremely lucrative Covid-19 vaccine. At least 1000 people are employed there. The company is the biggest employer in the region.

    “Developing a vaccine” doesn’t simply mean chemists and biologists in white coats “disinterestedly” working in laboratories applying the ideas of Francis Bacon. This will be one of the biggest state contracts ever. Many millions will be being spent on influencing government committees, advisers, statisticians, and the media. That’s what Big Pharma does. They spend far more on that than on laboratory work.

    Patrick Vallance, who was Glaxo Smith Kline’s head of research and development between 2013 and 2018, is now the British government’s “chief scientific adviser”. He was probably at Barnard Castle too. Big kudos to the first MP who has the guts to ask about Vallance’s wherabouts around the time Cummings is alleged to have been in Barnard Castle.

    That’s got to be what this is about: Cummings was meeting Glaxo Smith Kline.

    So it could be that

    * Cummings DID make the second trip
    * the second trip is, from a security point of view, “deniable”
    * the first trip is now serving as “chaff”

    I previously scoffed at the use of the word “cover-up” in connection with Durhamgate. But if there was a DENIABLE MEETING between a senior British government guy (Cummings) and a huge multinational that’s developing a vaccine (Glaxo Smith Kline), then a cover-up may well be underway…

    Watch this space.

    • N_

      Channel Four’s senior home affairs correspondent Simon Israel has been sent to the town of Barnard Castle, from where he reports “This is where evidence began to emerge”.

      A 30 mile drive for exercise? Really?? By Dominic Cummings who works 18-hour days? Bullsh*t!

      A “retired chemistry teacher” who identified Cummings in Barnard Castle and seems to have an unusually good memory for car number plates has been named as Robin Lees, 70. In such stories I immediately ask “How many languages does he speak?”, assuming there’s a high probability that the said witness is interested in “defence” or “electronics” (or both) and in addition “likes to travel”.

      Well…Lees seems to be this guy, who says “I taught science in secondary schools for 37 years, two years in Africa, and over a third of which was in a variety of schools in the North East.” Which school or schools in which part of Africa, I wonder? The Kamuzu Academy in Malawi, the notorious “Eton of Africa” named after the middle name of dictator Hastings Banda? Or perhaps somewhere that gives places to upper-class friends of the British royal family doing some “volunteering”?

      If, as seems very likely, Cummings attended a meeting in Barnard Castle, surely Boris Johnson must know.

    • Kempe

      Why wasn’t the meeting held at GSK’s global HQ in Brentord? Far easier to get to and much less chance of getting rumbled, it’s where all the senior GSK people would have their offices too.

      If Cummings was in Barnards Castle to visit GSK why was he spotted in the town itself? The factory is on the outskirts to the north.

      • Mrs Pau!

        Indeed. My main comment re Cummings in Barnard Castle is why would the government need him to be the go between with GSK? Surely any local retired senior government “trusty” could be used ? And indeed why not meet in GSK offices in Brentford? Come to that, doesn’t Cummings have access to Zoom? Or Microsoft Teams?

        Where are the GSK UK board members domiciled? Wouldn’t it be easier to helicopter one or two down to London for talks, if in fact they are all quarantined up in CoDurham.?

        I imagine there is a lot of mistrust in the Cabinet of the motives of PHE and top NHS management and even some senior figures in the DHSC at present . Look at the way DHSC et al, consistently snubbed offers of help from Sir Paul Nurse and Crick laboratories . And the bodge they made of buying in vaccines etc. Maybe the inner cabinet wanted discussions with GSK to be off the record at this stage? Maybe Cummings proposed himself as emissary at a meeting in Castle Barnard, at a suitable low key venue, as it would also give him an opportunity to visit his quarantined family.?

  • susan

    ” Authoritarianism is shoddy. Well it really is happening. It comes as something of a shock to see yourself listed as a criminal for writing the truth.”
    I am very concerned for you Craig as the whole farrago stinks. But spare a thought for the thousands who will be joining you for stating the simple fact that a man is not, cannot become a woman, nor can anyone be born in the “wrong” body. This scenario becomes possible if the Scotgov’s “Hate” Bill goes through.

  • Matt

    Craig, IIRC, this is the second time you’ve faced court in the past year?

    I’m truly sorry that you and your family have to endure another such harrowing event.

    I, for one, appreciate your work and, though I won’t be able to attend the virtual hearing, I’ll be making a donation, for what it’s worth.

    I’ve only just joined Twitter and was surprised at the disdain directed at Clive Lewis for retweeting your article re. Cummings and GSK. It would be extraordinary that any inquiry into vested interests might be dismissed as a “conspiracy theorizing,” were that not the established aim of the concept. Both the sheer volume of groupthink and an unwillingness to critically evaluate the information provided suggests that I have a lot to learn about how social media operates.

    Anyhow, best wishes and best of luck.

  • Andy Keen

    Request for attendance sent. Leave booked for that day.

    Given the farcical nature of this attack on you, if it gains any kind of traction that is indeed very worrying. But then, if the aim is to promote in the public mind a negative view of Craig Murray – the sort of thing the trolls consistently push out on social media – it does not require *competent* official attacks or a successful conviction. It just requires some kind of public hearing which can be reported with a certain slant. Perhaps that is what this is about?

  • Martinned

    Looks like you’re just as shocked as Tommy Robinson was, and for pretty much the same reason. You may or may not agree with the contempt laws in Scotland/England (I certainly have my questions), but as long as they exist you have to comply with them.

    • James

      Gosh – you’re much more twisted than I ever imagined if you can draw a parallel between Tommy Robinson and Craig Murray.

      It’s not clear to me that C.M. is primarily trying to keep out of jail; rather, his first and foremost objective seems to be to expose the corruption.

      He didn’t identify any of the alphabet sisters – he gave good information about the background of the case, information that should have been in the Main Stream Media, but wasn’t, which showed that huge swathes of what the alphabet sisters said under oath was a pack of lies. It seems to me that his information would only have helped people who already had a pretty good idea who the alphabet sisters were to identify them. So – not guilty – he acted entirely within the law.

      If he is found guilty, then this will establish that there are corrupt people at the heart of the Scottish judiciary, who are falsely `interpreting’ the laws for their own malicious ends.

  • Vasiliy Ulrikh

    I want to request access to your Stalinist show trial but Cloudflare is blocking Tor users from accessing the email protection. Would someone please just put it up? There’s really no reason to hide Article 19 access to a public proceeding anyway.

  • Paul Barbara

    Update re Julian Assange’s Case:
    June 1, 11 am Westminster Magistrates Court, US Administrative Case Hearing. London (
    ‘..26 MAY 2020 —
    US Administrative Case Hearing, Monday June 1, 11am Westminster Magistrates Court.
    This petition only grows through the resharing and retweeting by each and everyone of us. We are over 404,000 and once we pass 420,000 we will be the largest E-Petition to have been successfully tabled in the history of the Australian Parliament and the 4th largest overall. Let’s make history and ensure future generations will always know about the travesty that this torturous case represents….’
    Appears people can attend (probably only a hand-full); presumably there will be a ‘distanced’ Demo.

  • Notanon

    Has anyone had a reply from the court with a link to the hearing? Curiously, the case is not listed on the court website.

  • N_

    Hairgate: Nicola Sturgeon seems to be enjoying herself in the club of hubristic p*ss-takers. Responding to the suggestion that she has had a “professional” haircut when she shouldn’t have, she publishes a photo of herself wearing a horrible Adidas-branded masculine shirt (in which she probably thinks she looks dapper), holding her hair with one hand and a pair of scissors with the other. One doesn’t have to ask who on earth cuts their own hair while looking at a computer screen (smartphone or otherwise), because probably today some people do. But surely nobody does it without putting a towel over the clothes they’re wearing so they don’t get all hairy?

    In a sign of these increasingly moronic times, the Daily Record refers to the idea that she did in fact have an illicit haircut as a “conspiracy theory”.

    Top tip: it’s lawful to get your spouse (they’ve got to live in the same household, mind) to cut your hair. Funny that didn’t occur to you, Nicola, and you thought the only options were get it done professionally or do it yourself.

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