Friday, December 04, 2015

In the U.S. prosecutors win virtually all of their cases, nearly all of them without a trial

Conrad Black responds to an article in The Economist:
You included me in a gallery of apparently larcenous peers in Britain’s House of Lords (“The rotters’ club”, August 1st). The article’s graphic suggests that America’s criminal-justice system accords an accused what a citizen of Britain would consider due process. It does not. In the United States prosecutors win virtually all of their cases, nearly all of them without a trial, so severe is the distortion of the plea-bargain system in which inculpatory testimony is extorted from witnesses in exchange for immunity, including from charges of perjury.

I also believe I am ineligible for membership of your rotters’ club, because every count against me was abandoned, rejected by jurors, or vacated by America’s Supreme Court. Two spurious counts were self-servingly retrieved by a lower court that the Supreme Court had criticised and which had sent the two charges back to the lower court to assess its errors. The whole prosecution was nonsense and I achieved by far the largest libel settlement in Canadian history from my original accusers.

I would be happy to have the question of whether I am a rotter determined in a cursory review by an impartial ethics committee of Their Lordships’ House.
Blast from the Past: Conrad Black Gives Us a Lesson on How a Conservative Should Interact with the MSM