Submissions to official inquiries

2019

Submission to Westminster Commission inquiry on the ability of the Criminal Cases Review Commission to deal effectively with miscarriages of justice

Submission to Westminster Commission inquiry on the ability of the Criminal Cases Review Commission to deal effectively with miscarriages of justice, 21 August. Click here for information on the inquiry and here for Michael’s submission.

2018

Invited submission to the Ministry of Justice: Tailored Review of the Criminal Cases Review Commission

Invited submission to the Ministry of Justice: Tailored Review of the Criminal Cases Review Commission, 10 January. Click here for more information on the review and here for Michael’s submission.

2015

Invited oral evidence to the Parliamentary Justice Committee

Invited oral evidence to the Parliamentary Justice Committee, House of Commons, on the limitations of the Criminal Cases Review Commission in dealing with applications from alleged innocent victims of miscarriages of justice. January. Click here for video of the evidence to Parliament.

2014

Invited expert submission on the work of the Criminal Cases Review Commission to the Parliamentary Justice Committee

Invited expert submission on the work of the Criminal Cases Review Commission to the Parliamentary Justice Committee, the content of which contributed to the decision to have a full public consultation. Click here for the submission.

Influenced new rules of disclosure and access to evidence for alleged victims of wrongful convictions

The Supreme Court in the case of R (Nunn) v Chief Constable of Suffolk Constabulary considered arguments on the limitations on access to exhibits for DNA testing post-conviction. Michael (with Gabe Tan) drafted the third party intervention on behalf of Innocence Network UK (INUK) (jointly with JUSTICE and CALA (Criminal Appeal Lawyers Association)). It was underpinned by his research, casework and wider engagements on the operations of the Criminal Cases Review Commission in dealing with applications from alleged innocent victims of miscarriages of justice. The INUK submission succeeded in achieving positive reforms to the existing Attorney General’s rules on disclosure and access to evidence post-conviction for alleged victims of wrongful convictions. Click here for more information and here for the INUK submission.

2012

Invited expert submission to the Ministry of Justice’s Triennial Review of the Criminal Cases Review Commission

Invited expert submission to the Ministry of Justice’s Triennial Review of the Criminal Cases Review Commission. Click here for Michael’s submission.

2011

Influenced a new right of appeal against alleged wrongful convictions in South Australia

Michael was consulted by The Hon. Stephen Wade MLC, Shadow Attorney-General, South Australia, as part of the inquiry by the Legislative Review Committee into the Criminal Cases Review Commission Bill 2010. Michael’s invited submissions and research were cited extensively in the official report to the Parliament of South Australia, which embraced Michael’s submissions and recommended a new right of appeal for alleged victims of wrongful convictions rather than the setting up of a Criminal Cases Review Commission-style body in South Australia. Click here for the Report.

2008

Influenced a new regime for dealing with prisoners maintaining innocence

Michael conducted the first (and, to date, only) piece of empirical research on the obstacles and barriers to progression and release for life-sentenced prisoners maintaining innocence. The abridged findings were published in the peer-reviewed Prison Service Journal as: ‘Factual Innocence versus Legal Guilt: The Need for a New Pair of Spectacles to view the Problem of Life-Sentenced Prisoners Maintaining Innocence’ . This research and follow-up exchanges with NOMS/Ministry of Justice influenced a new way of dealing with prisoners maintaining innocence by influencing reforms to Prison Service Order (PSO) 4700, which governs the treatment of indeterminate sentenced prisoners. Crucially, prison and probation staff in prisons in England and Wales are now instructed to recognise, officially, that some prisoners maintaining innocence are, in fact, innocent and to deal with them on this basis rather than seeing them all as merely “deniers”. The full research findings are published in Chapter 5 of The Innocent and the Criminal Justice System.