The Hallett Review has been a complete success and we can thankfully say that we have accomplished the completion of the case of John Downey. We have recently received a letter of assurance from the Northern Ireland Office that has suggested that he is no longer of interest to the police anywhere within the United Kingdom and that he was in face wanted for questioning in relation to the 1982 Hyde Park bombings. The trial judge after examining the evidence and statements of the administrative scheme in particular to the case related to Mr Downey, and has now rules that it would be an absurd ruling to file the case forward and to process through the courts and to continue this case and prosecution.
Having finished the case we can now conclude that the Hallett Review will be being placed in an office within the United Kingdom as a team of agents whom will be dealing with the questioning and receiving of statements toward cases and prospect cases throughout the United Kingdom. We plan to implement the Hallett Reviewing System into all future important cases which require any similar form of investigation. This will include any cases that have a high profile or a potential for requirements of any people who were stood by or may have witnessed or heard any useful information.
We are also going to be focusing the Hallett Review Team (HRT) on the good practice and effectiveness for cases of child abuse. To do this we will make it a protocol to follow between the crown prosecution service police and the local authorities in the exchange of information within the investigation and prosecution of the specified child abuse cases. We will only deal in high priority or high authority cases such as ones recently passed such as the cases within the BBC such as Jimmy Savile and Rolf Harris. Hopefully in the future we can aim to prevent such cases from appearing in the United Kingdom courts but we hope to prevent the possibility for these cases to be possible to any hosts or high authority presenters or people.
In the future we will call on the people who may be relevant in any case that requires our services, however it is not essential for you to co-operate with us, it will help the cases we work on to achieve a final result from our judge and jury. So in essence you will be a key factor in prosecuting, convicting or clearing somebodies name. Therefore you can know that you have helped our case in some way shape or form. Hopefully that in itself is a reason enough for you to want to help our cause. Additionally, background checks are going to be essential in this line of work, just because we need to clarify the information we receive unfortunately, as we cannot take somebody just by their word, we need to confirm that the information is likely either legitimate or illegitimate.
Since we have made our first article we have found that the ruling in R v John Downey which triggered this Review, and disclosure to the public of the details of an administrative scheme to deal with ‘on the runs’, had a distressing impact on bereaved families and survivors of terrorist attacks across the United Kingdom. They deserve as many answers as one can give to their questions about the scheme as soon as possible.
I am unhappy to report that there has been a great deal of misunderstandings about the review which has caused people to misinterpret and misreport regarding the scheme. This paired with some which may have unwittingly added to their distress. I urge everyone who has read this review to carefully consider what they have wrote before commenting on it and please choose to potentially reword their responses when they do eventually reply because you need to be conscious of the potential victims whom are affected by this issue.
Both me and my team of associates have examined thousands of documents and written reports beforehand and have worked hard to guarantee that we have conducted a thorough investigation on this review in the time which we had available to do so. Therefore, I am firstly massively thankful to my team for all their efforts. If we have failed to answer any of your questions or queries within my remits or did not reply to enough of your satisfaction, it is not that I haven’t tried to do so but instead just the overwhelming amount of workload and I hope that what we have been able to establish will assist not only Northern Ireland Affairs Select Committee but also the team we have built in the UK for future cases of similar nature.
For all those who have made themselves available for interview or comments at whatever notice of our convenience, I am so very indebted to you all. Those who took the trouble to write to me or our office or offered to meet any of the members of our team and to those who provided any available assistance to the review, I am also extremely grateful!
Because of all of these efforts we have been able to reach the preliminary findings before finishing the case and trial. This has been an essential point given the sensitivity of the case and the review itself. I also had to allow time for security checks and further representations from those particularly affected by these findings. However, despite the slight delay in finalizing this report, I am now pleased to be able to set out my findings in full and hopefully before any court and jury. With all of our findings and your help hopefully we can bring the case to a final resolution.
Here at Hallett review we are an independent reviewing board taking the administrative scheme for ‘On the Runs’ into account. The Hallett review terms of reference were identified in the case of John Downey, the prime minister announced on the 27th February that an independent judge would produce a full public account of the administrative scheme.
These terms of reference were:
- To produce a full public account of the operation and extent of the administrative scheme
- To determine whether any letters sent through scheme contained errors
- To make recommendations as necessary on this or related matters that are drawn to the attention of the inquiry
Following this announcement and consultation with the lord chief justice and the new secretary of state in Northern Ireland, the independent Hallett review was to be conducted with the help of the secretary of state and the Rt Hon Lady Justice Hallett.
The review itself will produce a full public account of the operations and extents which the administrative scheme On the Runs. This will therefore determine whether any letters sent through the scheme contained any errors within it, and will then make recommendations as necessary on this related matter.
Here at the Hallett review, we have full access to government papers about the operation of the scheme and will interview key individuals including political figures, civil servants, police and any other relevant individuals whom are willing to assist.
Some people ask whether the Hallett Review is a statutory inquiry, the answer to that is no. The review itself does not come under any of the inquiries act of 2005. This means that the review itself is not able to compel any witnesses and will not conduct public hearings. However the Hallett Review will try and seek to establish the facts in an open and rigorous way.
The prime minister announced on the 27th of February that he would appoint an independent judge to produce a full public account of the operation of the OTR administrative scheme. This followed the collapse of the trial of john downey. Who received a letter of assurance from the Northern Ireland Office suggesting he was not of interest to the police anywhere in the United Kingdom. From this occurrence the trial judge examined what the effects of the administrative scheme were and in particular because it was related to John Downey which then ruled that it would be an abuse of the process of the court for them to continue the prosecution.
Some people have asked what the Review costs and who is paying for it, to which we reply that we are funded and sponsored by the Northern Ireland Office and that the budget has been set at £490,000 where after we shall publish all of our expenditure. If you wish to submit information about the review then we encourage you to send assist by forwarding and contacting the review to provide your information.
The review itself is estimated to have concluded by August 2017 but we are currently unsure about its resolution.