This was a conference for training members of student pro bono projects who review cases of people claiming to be innocent of crimes for which they were convicted, and for independent investigators working to overturn the convictions of people they believe to be innocent. Twitter #MJRCconf2018
Conference Timetable – speaker details are below.
|Friday 16 February 2018|
|13.45||Welcome Introduction: what MJRCs/Innocence Projects do, purpose of conference||Professor Toby Seddon –Head of the School of Law
|14.00-15.00||Cell site analysis
how to understand and challenge mobile phone location evidence which features in an increasing number of prosecutions
|Andy Townsend, Footprint Investigations
|15.00-16.00||The A to Z of Appeals and how to get your fresh evidence admitted.||Mark Newby, Solicitor Advocate Quality Solicitors Jordans|
|16.00-16.15||Tea and Coffee|
Andrew Green/ Hannah Quirk
The single most important topic facing case investigators and the criminal justice system today
|Surviving a Miscarriage of justice:
Michael O’Brien in break out room – copies of his books available – proceeds to the Dylan O’Brien Charity
|17.00-17.30||Special measures and vulnerable witnesses||Brigid Baillie
chair Andrew Green
|17.30||Can we really help investigate cases and help those wrongly convicted -a system in crisis?||Chair Mark George QC
Dennis Eady Philip Rule,
|18.30-19.30||Drinks reception in Christie’s Bar|
|Saturday 17 February|
|09.00-10.00||Finding information about people on the internet||Neil Smith|
|10.00-11.00||CCRC – what it can do, and how it works||Commissioner David James Smith and a case review manager|
|11.15-12.15||CCRC workshop: how to prepare an application that could succeed|
|12-15-1.15||Disclosure in Sexual offence prosecutions
Chair Hannah Quirk
|13.15||Lunch||Showing of film Say I’m Innocent|
|14.15-15.15||Understanding DNA Evidence||Allan Jamieson|
|15.15-15.45||Eric Allison- persuading the media to support Miscarriage of Justice case investigations;
Chair William Bevin-Nicholls
|The changing attitude of the appeal court towards criticisms of defence lawyers:
|16.00-17.00||Dealing with Joint enterprise Cases
Chair Nicola Campbell
|Jan Cunliffe (JENGbA)|
|17.00-18.00||The way forward: panel
The 2018 National Training Conference for students in pro bono innocence projects, Miscarriages of Justice Review Centres, and independent case investigators will take place at the University of Manchester on Friday 16 and Saturday 17 February.
The students and other investigators give their own time to help with cases of people who claim to be innocent of crimes of which they have been convicted, and who cannot afford to pay lawyers to review their cases. This Conference gives them unique opportunities to hear and meet some of the UK’s leading experts who can help them find out what might have gone wrong in police investigations and prosecutions, and what evidence can be found to support claims of innocence.
We are delighted to have a major contribution from the Criminal Cases Review Commission, an independent body which has the powers to obtain the fresh evidence needed to overturn wrongful convictions, and to refer cases to the Court of Appeal. The CCRC will explain in detail how it carries out its work and lead workshops for participants.
Experts giving presentations and leading discussions include:
Professor Allan Jamieson, Director of the Forensic Institute in Scotland. Allan is often called to give expert evidence about DNA in the UK and the USA. His evidence was of key importance in the Omagh bombing trial.
Andy Townsend of Footprint Investigations, leading experts on the analysis of phone call data which pinpoints where users are located.
Eric Allison, prisons correspondent of the Guardian who writes on miscarriage of justice cases.
Neil Smith, perhaps the UK’s foremost expert on using the internet to trace people and find information about them.
Andrew Green, founder of INNOCENT and Director of the Miscarriages of Justice Review Centre at the University of Sheffield.
We will debate and explore the problem of joint enterprise prosecutions, in which innocent people are convicted just because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time, with
Janet Cunliffe of Joint Enterprise Not Guilty by Association (JENGBA) and mother of Jordan, wrongly convicted of murder.
The chaotic state of the disclosure system, responsible for many wrongful convictions because evidence gathered by the police which would help suspects is not passed on to them, will be explored through recent high profile cases, including those of
Liam Allan, who nearly went to prison for rape and was saved by the independent prosecutor and his defence barrister Julia Smart will be present to explain what happened.
Danny Kay, whose rape conviction was recently overturned thanks to the work of barrister Philip Rule who discovered important undisclosed material.
Mark Newby, solicitor advocate, possibly the UK’s foremost criminal appeal lawyer and a long term active supporter of innocence projects MJRCs, will talk about his recent successes and the technicalities of putting together an appeal case.
Mark George QC, head of Garden Court North Chambers, who represented families at the Hillsborough, who will help students, as he has for many years, to understand cases make progress with them.
Finally students, experts, leading lawyers and MPs will come together to discuss how to take forward the campaign to eradicate the scourge of miscarriage of justice.
The Conference has been organised by Professor Claire McGourlay of the University of Manchester and Dr Andrew Green of the University of Sheffield.
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