Reaction to news that the Scottish Government has ditched plans to end the corroboration requirement in Scots law
LET’S be blunt about it. Lord Carloway reported in 2011, recommending that corroboration be struck from the law of Scotland. In the months and years that followed, the case for abolishing the rule was by turns shambolic, confused, incoherent, and ad hominem. Throughout, the Cabinet Secretary for Justice cut a doubly alienating figure: in the TV studios and in the parliament, he was both jumbled and implausible in his advocacy, and high-handed, carnaptious and indicting of those who disagreed with him.
Police officers, parliamentarians – even the Lord Advocate – conspired to give an impression of muddle and confusion around what the policy was for, and what it would and would not achieve if enacted. All of this is regrettable — not least because there are good reasons to take another look at what has become of the old doctrine of corroboration and the injustices which it sometimes produces.
Picture courtesy of Michael Coghlan