Menezes Family Fight CPS And IPCC With Legal Challenges
Press release from the Justice4JeanFamily Campaign 16.10.2005
The Menezes family begin their fight back against the legal system today to challenge what they describe as 'the ultimate cover up''.
Lawyers acting for the family of Jean Charles de Menezes will today lodge a judicial review challenging the decisions by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) not to prosecute any individual police officer but instead prosecute the Metropolitan Police Service under health and safety legislation.
They are also judicially challenging the CPS' successful attempt to adjourn the inquest in Jean's death and the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) for their failure to disclose their report into his killing.
The lawyers will argue that there is sufficient evidence to justify a charge for murder or manslaughter and that it is in breach of Article 2 of the Human Rights Act for the CPS to have chosen the health and safety charge. This is because such a charge is failing to bring about an effective, independent and prompt public investigation with involvement from Jean's family.
The legal team will argue that health and safety legislation was never intended to apply to policing decisions which resulted in an intentional loss of life. As no individual officer can be held responsible through such a prosecution there will be no individual accountability for those who ordered and carried out Jean's killing.
The lawyers will also argue that the failure to disclose the IPCC report to the family is a breach of their Article 2 rights. By not publishing their report, the IPCC are failing to fulfil their public duty as enshrined in their own statutory guidance to operate an 'open and transparent' system and make it impossible to ascertain on what basis the CPS' decisions were made.
Harriet Wistrich, lawyer for the Menezes family said
"In respect of the decision not to prosecute any individual officers we consider that the CPS has usurped the role of the jury in its assessment of the evidence.
In respect of the decision to seek adjournment of the inquest and to ask the IPCC not to disclose their report to the family, the CPS's uncompromising approach gives the appearance of a stitch up"
Burying the Truth
It is now fifteen months since the death of Jean, an innocent 27 year old man shot 7 times in the head by the Metropolitan Police. There has still been no public scrutiny of the events that led to his death. The Menezes family believe this to be as a result of continued attempts by the IPCC and the CPS to bury the truth.
Alex Perieira, cousin of Jean said
"The IPCC and CPS are acting like gang members trying to cover up the actions of their bosses, the police. It is clear they want to hide the truth from everybody. It is the ultimate cover up. This judicial review is about making sure that someone is held responsible for the cold blooded killing of Jean"
A spokesperson for the Jean Charles de Menezes Family Campaign said
"The IPCC and the CPS have shown a flagrant and deliberate disregard for any form of accountability to come from the killing of an innocent man. No officer has faced any disciplinary charges or so much as lost a single day's pay for Jean's killing in the 15 months since his death.
It is clear the judicial system is failing in this case. This adds to our arguments for a public inquiry into Jean's killing"
Note to editors
- Copies of the judicial review application will be available on www.justice4jean.com by 5pm on the 16th October