Defence Fund and Contempt Case Update 105

I have transferred £10,000 from my defence fund to Mark Hirst’s defence fund, which needs money immediately. If anybody who donated objects, your donation can be refunded if you use the contact button top right to send a message.

This does not mean that my own defence fund has more money than it needs – quite the opposite, as the Crown seems to be continuing its policy of spinning out the case as long as possible, with multiple procedural hearings, to drain our funds and ability to fight. The Crown has still not produced the new argument on how it proposes to prove “jigsaw identification”, which we strongly deny and have produced considerable evidence to disprove. The Crown was ordered at the last procedural hearing to come up with new substantive argument, and we are yet to see this. The Crown’s only tactic to date has been to argue that all of our witnesses and evidence are inadmissible, even most of my own witness statement, and the Crown refuses to produce any of the documentation requested by my defence.

The requested documentation included the messages from Peter Murrell to Sue Ruddick, Chief Operating Officer of the SNP, stating that “it was a good time to be pressurising the police” to take action against Alex Salmond, and another to get the Metropolitan Police to act because “the more fronts he is having to firefight on the better”. Incredibly, even though these messages are now firmly in the public domain, the Crown Office still refuses to release the original documents to my lawyers for use in my defence.

Those messages are the tip of the iceberg. It is some months since I saw them, but others include a message from one of the SNP’s most senior officials in which they explain that the police were saying they did not have sufficient evidence to act on some of the complaints. There then follows a line that had me springing up from my chair when first I read it. It was to the effect that if the police would only specify what evidence they need, then they could get it for them.

My sworn statement, given to the High Court in August, names that official. I am not permitted to tell you the name before the trial.

There is much more of this that I could tell you. Either the Crown Office will release these documents for my defence, or from the witness box I shall recount them (which is the reason they seek to stop me giving evidence). To prove to you that I really do know this material, here is an extract from my twitter direct messages detailing the famous Murrell one, written two months before it was leaked to Kenny Macaskill and given by him to the press.

The trial keeps slipping backwards due to Crown procrastination. I am in the peculiar position of facing a potential jail sentence yet being impatient for them to bring it on. Currently scheduled for 20 and 21 January in the High Court, Edinburgh. Please put it in your diary.

For those asking how can I stand for President of the SNP while exposing this kind of dirty laundry, the answer is very simple. This is a part of why I am standing. This kind of appalling behaviour by party officials has nothing to do with party members, nothing to do with Independence, and we have to stand up to put a stop to it, before it does still more damage to the party. Hushing it up would eventually explode in the face of the Independence campaign.


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105 thoughts on “Defence Fund and Contempt Case Update

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  • Geoffrey

    On another subject, horrible obituary of the great Fisk in The Times, probably written by Oliver Kamm.

    • lysias

      Surprisingly good obituary for Fisk in today’s Washington Post. Looks like their obituary section has not yet been gleichgeschaltet.

      Very good piece on Fisk by Patrick Coburn on

  • nevermind

    As and when you are elected Craig, how would you suggest the party membership to get the 700.000 ring fenced Independence Funds reimbursed Craig?
    They can’t get away with frittering that money away just like that. What a cabal of thieving magpies.

    • BrianFujisan

      Well Said Nevermind.. Some Clarity on this from SNP would be Welcome.

      Also Re the ‘ Defense Fund ‘ I think almost ALL of us would happily Donate More.. Sickening corruption by the Crown.. Bastrds

  • Stonky

    Craig I hope you will use every means at your disposal – fair and foul – to publicise that quote from Russel’s book as widely as possible during the campaingn for the party presidency. And should you ever be pricked by the slightest twinge of principle, just remember that you are up against a bunch of shitebags and liars without a shred of integrity, who richly deserve to see what it feels like when the tables are turned on them.

    I’d happily contribute to another advert in the National carrying that quote and a big picture of its author.

    • Deepgreenpuddock

      Please excuse if I am missing something but what is the quote from Russel’s book that you refer to.

      • Stonky

        “Take health first of all. We would encourage the private sector to compete with established NHS hospitals, clinics and other services. We would encourage NHS management and staff to buy out existing NHS facilities and services under favourable financial terms and join the private sector. We would require NHS services that remained in government ownership to run at a profit, however modest. Those that failed to maintain profitability over a reasonable time period would be privatised…”

        • iain

          Wow….. people should definitely be made aware of who this guy is and what he intends for them. Why stand on ceremony against such a person — and a rotten establishment trying to put you in prison

        • Stevie Boy

          Correct me if I’m wrong, but is there anyone in Government or senior NHS Management that is not either a stated privateer, married to one or has connections directly or indirectly with US ‘Healthcare’ ?
          Seems the paedos have been allowed to take over the nursery.

        • Twirlip

          For anyone else who is as puzzled as I was, before spending several minutes consulting one of Craig’s previous articles, then Wikipedia, then Google, and finally another blog – couldn’t we just have been told, especially as someone else has already asked? – the quotation is from Dennis MacLeod and Michael Russell (2006), Grasping the Thistle: How Scotland Must React to the Three Key Challenges of the Twenty First Century (Argyll Publishing, 2006) (ISBN 978-1-902831-86-2), page 155.

        • Twirlip

          There are more quotations from the book here:

          Dave R, “When Grasping Thistles, be careful of the pricks….”, A Positive Union [Sun 17 Nov 2019].

          From yet another blog (I don’t know anything about the minefield of Scottish politics, so I can only hope that quoting from Bella Caledonia won’t cause ructions!):

          Rob Brown, “The SNP’s Great Moving Right Show” [Mon 18 Feb 2019]

          “The SNP, Russell and MacLeod jointly pontificated, should banish devilish notions of national independence and instead seek to negotiate a “New Union” with England. Once Westminster conferred its blessing on full fiscal autonomy for Bute House, in return for abolition of the Barnett formula, auld Scotia could then be administered all the shock therapy she so desperately required to be jolted out of her zombie state.
          Our semi-independent government could then go on the lion rampage against the undeserving poor, the idle and the feckless. Scotland’s welfare state and taxes would be slashed, with vouchers introduced to marketize provision of schools and hospitals – none of which would be supplied through the NHS, since this would be dismantled in favour of an insurance-based health service.
          Oh and (almost forgot) Russell and MacLeod also floated the idea that foreign affairs and defence should become a shared responsibility with Westminster.
          None of their madcap manifesto ever had a hope in hell of being enacted, Danke Gott. After scanning the first draft of Grasping the Thistle, Alex Salmond grasped Mike Russell by the lapels and told him to delete the most politically-dangerous passages or he would probably never sit again in the Scottish Parliament – certainly not within the SNP’s ranks.
          Plainly petrified of being forced to remain roaming out on the windswept wilderness of Argyll, Michael Russell (to give him his full nom de plume) instantly stopped preaching his new gospel or gifting signed copies of his heretical parchment to even his closest friends and acquaintances. Rumour has it many copies got pulped. Certainly, he’s never penned a sequel.”

          • Giyane

            From reading these quotes it sounds to me as though the driving force in the punishment of Scottish activists is Tory privatisation agenda. Anyone still adhering to dinosaur socialism will be attacked through their weakest point.

            Salmond’s affability becomes rape, Hirst’s analyst skills become hate speech, Assange’s politics becomes endangering lives and Craig’s intellectual honesty makes him a conspiracy theorist.

            Caricatures worthy of spitting image, but dreamt up by ultra right wing pro- Trumpian ideologues, not from the left like spitting image.

            If indeed there is a pattern here that very right wing ideology is abusing the law for very extreme political ends that are absolutely contrary to the will.of the electorate, the judiciary clearly has a duty to recognise the pattern and frustrate the anti- democratic abuse of the Justice system and its resources.

            The right wing hijacking democracy has been tried before by Hitler.
            Stopping it is what we have courts for.

          • Kempe

            To think that a central plank of the Yes campaign was that independence was the only way to save the Scottish NHS from the Tories.

            Has he changed his mind or is he just keeping quiet?

          • Johny Conspiranoid

            “The SNP’s Great Moving Right Show”

            I wonder how shows like this are organised.

  • Father O'Blivion

    So, Leslie Evans is being called back to the Committee. That makes three times, I think (correct me if I’m wrong).
    First question should be “Why the f#*k won’t you give a straight answer?”.
    The Committee are certainly getting tetchie. Twitchie, Legal guy got a bleaching.

    • Easily Confused

      Followed by Sarah Davidson who had a startling selective memory loss about just about everything.

    • Cubby

      Father O’Blivion

      Sturgeon supporters say there is no evidence she is guilty of anything.

      They are like a man standing staring into the distance saying evidence what evidence I see none whilst the smoke from the smoking gun at his feet is slowly drifting upwards towards his nose.

      All the evidence is in the papers lodged on the Scotgov website under the Inquiry/committee section. It takes a while to read all the papers but evidence of disgraceful and unacceptable behaviour is all there.

      For three years they have persecuted Salmond. To this day they still do not produce all the papers they should be producing. They lie and then they remember and correct their statement once they realise they will not get away with their lie.

  • Robert

    It’s been pointed out elsewhere (comment on Gordon Dangerfield’s blog) that section 16 of the Procedure readfs:

    “16. The First Minister will be advised where a current or former Minister who is a member of the Party of the current Administration has declined to cooperate [with the process] and will be responsible for further action”.

    Clearly AS did not cooperate. So was the first Minister advised?

    • Cubby


      That would be me who raised the point. There has been no mention of that happening in Sturgeon or Evans submissions even though it was clear Salmond was not accepting the process applied to him. So Evans did not follow her own process.

      • Photios

        “Evans did not follow her own process.”

        You think? Was there not further action?
        Was the FM not (even tangentially) responsible?

        • Robert

          I don’t disagree with you about responsibility

          I wonder whther the underlying truth is that someone sad: “do what you think is right, but don’t involve me.” Leading to having to back those who follow instructions loyally.

  • StuartM

    Craig, the case against you is flimsy enough but the case against Mark Hirst is even flimsier. It is an indictment of the state of Scottish justice that a man can be committed for trial, with all the stress and financial costs that entails, for uttering a commonplace expression that most of us have used at some time or other – a quote from the Bible, no less!!! Any competent magistrate should have thrown the case out and reprimanded the prosecutor for wasting the time of both the court and the defendant. That this one bound Mark over for trial instead indicates the degree of politicisation of the Scottish magistracy.

    It is evident that the Scottish Government is practising lawfare against you and Mark, if they can’t put you in gaol they’ll bankrupt you through legal costs of your defence. It’s a scandal that the Govt can maliciously prosecute citizens using the limitless taxpayers’ funds and the only redress the citizen has is to mount an equally expensive court case for compensation.

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