Friday, April 24, 2015

Greville Janner's supporters melt away

Thanks to Spotlight for the illustration.

After the allegations against Greville Janner had received their first public airing during the trial of Frank Beck in 1991, he received extraordinary support from a group of colleagues in the Commons,

In recent days two of them who are still active in politics have backed away from supporting him again.

In 1991 Keith Vaz told the House:
The people of his constituency do not believe the lies. They are with him now, and they will be with him in the future, because they know of his unstinting service to anyone who approaches him, for whatever cause. He has vindicated himself, and all of us, in what he has said tonight. ... 
My hon. and learned Friend, too, is a brave man in what he has done, said and endured over the past weeks and months. Every one of us should be grateful to him, because ... what has happened to my hon. and learned Friend could happen to any one of us, so we should all be aware of it.
Now, according to BBC News, he supports the comments of Leicestershire police and crime commissioner, who wants the case to be reconsidered.

In 1991 Alex Carlile said:
I can but echo the tributes that have been paid to my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Leicester, West (Mr. Janner). He is a man of determination and enthusiasm, whose integrity and will power have crossed party lines. I for one value the friendship that he has given me in the eight and a half years that I have been a Member of the House, despite the fact that we are in different parties and disagree on many issues. ... 
I respectfully suggest to the Solicitor-General that a clear and simple change can be made to the law which would protect those who are not the parties to a trial—third parties outside a trial. It would in no way inhibit the right of a defendant to make his defence, however dishonest. It would in no way inhibit his right to instruct his solicitors, however egregiously. But it would prevent the press from publishing calumnies which cannot be answered, as in the Beck case, sometimes until weeks or even months after the allegation is made in the public arena of a court.
Now, according to the Telegraph:
Lord Carlile last night said evidence since gathered by Leicestershire police meant he would “not make the same comments today”. ... 
He said: “This was 24 years ago. At that time, there was absolutely no evidence that would stand up in a court of law against, as then was, Mr Janner.”
And, though he was not around in 1991, it is worth noting the interview Norman Lamb gave to LBC saying Janner should have been prosecuted earlier.

That is because, as my Trivial Fact of the Day once revealed, Norman worked for Greville Janner after leaving university.

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