A Duty of Care

by Satish Sekar © Satish Sekar (January 31st 2009)



The abolition of the Discretionary Scheme for compensation means that were a similar case to the Cardiff Five to occur now they would not be compensated unless they sue, despite being demonstrably innocent. They did not come under the Statutory Scheme. This is particularly egregious as many victims of miscarriages of justice receive no care unless it comes under their claim for compensation.

Thanks to a shocking error by the consultant hired by the Working Group, the vast majority of victims of miscarriages of justice received no help at all from the State that wronged them. Peter Shore (not to be confused with the former MP) was asked by the Working Group set up by the Home Office to consider the provision of after-care. His conclusions make it clear that he did not follow his terms of reference. As a result even the limited help provided is to be denied the victims of injustice who had the temerity to have their convictions quashed at a their first appeal..

The logic is that if a conviction is quashed on a first appeal it shows that the system is working as intended. It shows that a small area has been corrected, but still denies them even the limited after-care provided by the Miscarriages of Justice Project for victims of miscarriages of justice. Consequently, despite being proven innocent beyond doubt the Cardiff Five were denied any assistance rebuilding their lives.


This is a shameful way to treat the victims of an easily preventable miscarriage of justice – one where there is no credible doubt about innocence. If this issue is not addressed it is inevitable that more victims will be created. And it does not end here. What about the way Lynette’s family have been treated. They were assured that the original defendants were guilty. Indeed the late Terry White reacted furiously towards the original defendants on various occasions.

Her family had to endure the certainty that the guilty were paying for their crime being taken away and then 11 years with nobody being punished for it only to find out that they had been badly misled and had hated the wrong people for years. They have yet to receive an apology for the failings of the investigation and the effect that it as had upon them. What assistance do they receive in coming to terms with what happened and the guilt of having hated the wrong people for so long?

They receive no compensation for the failings of the criminal justice system. Peggy Pesticcio in particular was forced not only to cope with the loss of her daughter, but she had to fight tenaciously to get justice for her daughter. She paid a very high price that has not been acknowledged or catered for.

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