Three witnesses identified him as the gunman. Davis claimed that he was the victim of false accusations from a jealous former partner but the defence could not be put to the jury – so as to protect the witnesses’ identities.
Lord Bingham of Cornhill, the senior law lord, said that it was a “long-established principle of the English common law” that, subject to some exceptions, an accused should be confronted by his accusers so that he was able to “cross-examine them and challenge their evidence”. Malcolm Swift, QC, for Davis, said that the ruling could deter witnesses from coming forward. “The House of Lords has reasserted a common-law principle that has existed for centuries, going back to Norman times, that a defendant can cross-examine those giving evidence against him,” he said.
You can\’t be tried and convicted without knowing who is accusing you, who are the witnesses and without being able to question them.
Sounds entirely logical and extremely fair.
Can\’t see why anyone would object actually. Sure, there\’ll be hard cases like the one above but seriously, if you were up on trial would you want to be faced with anonymous allegations? Ones which, because you don\’t know who they are being made by, you cannot refute or put in context?
No, so why should anyone else be put in that position: we are all equal before the law, are we not?