ALBA Party Call For Government to Halt Trial Without Jury Plans
ALBA Party have called on the Scottish Government to pause steps towards removing jury trial where there are accusations of serious sexual offences.
In a policy position approved by the Party’s Spring Conference, ALBA Party say that they are committed to the use of citizens to assess credibility and reliability of evidence, actions and thoughts of witnesses and of accused persons.
The Scottish Government are currently embroiled in controversy as legal professionals across Scotland have intimated that they will not take part in juryless trials for cases involving the prosecution of serious sexual offences including rape and attempted rape.
ALBA Party have now called on the Scottish Government to halt their plans.
Commenting ALBA Party’s National Equalities Convener Eva Comrie said:
“The Government is ploughing ahead with plans with only sparse evidence to support the effectiveness of their intentions and without having firstly carried out significant consultation work with Scotland’s valued legal profession.
“If trials involving sexual assault and rape are determined solely by a judge, and not a jury, then there is an inherent risk that these trials will become politicised, as will the individual prosecution rates of Judges.
“Our system in which citizens assess the credibility and reliability of evidence, actions and thoughts of witnesses and of accused persons has worked well for centuries. The Scottish Government should halt their plans.”