New bid to overturn Janner decision

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Published: Wednesday 29th April 2015 by The News Editor

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Another law firm representing alleged victims of Lord Janner has written to Britain’s most senior prosecutor in a bid to overturn the decision not to bring the former MP to trial over child sex abuse claims.

Director of Public Prosecutions Alison Saunders has come under intense pressure following her decision not to prosecute the peer over child abuse allegations, on the basis that he was medically unfit.

Peter Garsden, whose firm is representing three clients in a civil child abuse claim against Lord Janner, has said he wants Ms Saunders to clarify the reasons for her decision by disclosing the various reports which supported it.

Yesterday Liz Dux, specialist abuse lawyer at Slater and Gordon, said her firm had written to the DPP to formally request a review of the decision not to go ahead with a prosecution.

Ms Dux said all her clients want is “the opportunity to give their evidence and to be heard”.

Mr Garsden said the decision not to bring criminal charges in relation to nine victims in spite of the CPS stating there was enough evidence to merit a prosecution had left his clients “outraged”.

Mr Garsden added: “We are considering the possibility of judicial review.”

He is now requesting documentation relating to the criminal investigations into the 86-year-old peer, and also details of the medical reports and legal opinions sought by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) prior to the announcement of its decision on April 16.

The lawyer has asked for CPS agreement to obtain his own report on Lord Janner’s mental capacity, and wants confirmation there was indeed sufficient evidence to bring criminal charges.

In his letter, Mr Garsden has said: “We would like to see all documents touching and concerning the decision not to prosecute.”

Referring to the possibility for a review, he has also said: “We wish to discount the validity of an argument that your decision is open to judicial review.

“Accordingly, the more evidence and documentation you can send to us, in order to justify the decision, the better.”

In relation to historic investigations, he adds: “We would also like to see all documents surrounding the various attempted, but failed, investigations into Janner in the past.”

Those include the investigation into several children’s homes in Leicestershire during the 1990s.

Earlier this month, Ms Saunders said: “The CPS has concluded that Lord Greville Janner should not be prosecuted because of the severity of his dementia which means he is not fit to take part in any proceedings, there is no treatment for his condition and there is no current or future risk of offending.”

She added: “The lack of a prosecution will be extremely disappointing to complainants.”

Mr Garsden, of Quality Solicitors Abney Garsden, is also president of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers.

He said: “My clients are outraged that, after co-operating with a two-year police investigation into the abuse by Lord Janner, they will not now have their chance of justice through the courts.

“They inevitably feel that there is one rule for peers and members of the establishment, and another rule for everyone else.

“They want the Director of Public Prosecutions’ decision reviewed in the hope that it will result in them being able to have their day in court, which is all they ever want.

“We are considering the possibility of judicial review.”

Ms Dux said: “We have been instructed by our clients to seek a review of the Director of Public Prosecutions’ decision not to charge Lord Janner.

“They very much hope that she gives their request the careful attention it deserves.

“All they have ever wanted is for the opportunity to give their evidence and to be heard.”

Lord Janner denies the allegations against him. His family have said he is “entirely innocent of any wrongdoing”.

Published: Wednesday 29th April 2015 by The News Editor

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