November 8th, 2007

Right from the first reports, I suspected this would happen, but still it comes as a shock- a pleasant shock, but still a shock:

Police drop all terror-related charges

The police are not charging any of the so-called Urewera 16 under the Terrorism Suppression Act, despite using the legislation to search homes last month.

Police took 12 of the 16 cases to the Solicitor General last month who assessed the police’s evidence.

Solicitor General David Collins QC announced this afternoon that the cases did not warrant prosecution under the act but could go ahead under the Arms Act.

Although Mr Collins does slip in this ominous little comment:

Regrettably not all the evidence I have been able to see will be made public

There may well be very good reasons for this. On the other hand, the reasons may be just as good as those that kept Ahmed Zaoui in jail with the threat of deportation to almost certain torture and death hanging over his head.

Well, they’re not free, there are still the charges under the Arms Act to be dealt with, and if the Police do have the evidence to prosecute, then they should be prosecuted.

Anyway, there’s still this interesting little comment from Mr Collins:

Mr Collins criticised the legislation and said it should be reviewed by the Law Commission. He said it was complex and incoherent and was almost impossible to apply to domestic terrorists.

Complex and incoherent law can only be bad law, surely?

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