Well, no, not really

The place was Dubai. The star was Tina Turner. “As the American pop legend belted out Simply the Best,” write authors Simon Clark and Will Louch, “guests sipped vintage champagne served from an ice bar that was melting slowly into the Arabian sand on the beach, fire dancers performed and cigar rollers flown in from Cuba handed out their aromatic wares.”

The host of the party was Arif Naqvi, founder of Abraaj, a private equity fund that managed nearly $14bn and had stakes in a hundred companies. Its investors were treated to oratory from Bill Clinton, the former US president, and dinner with Buzz Aldrin, the second man on the moon. Arif’s promise to give capitalism a conscience seduced western governments and billionaire Bill Gates.

But it was all a lie, a fairy tale. In their gripping new book, The Key Man, British journalists Clark and Louch tell how Arif helped himself to the private equity group’s money, pocketing $780m, half of which is still missing. The account raises questions over whether “impact investing” and “stakeholder capitalism” are less about poverty alleviation for the world than guilt alleviation for the Davos elite.

It’s nothing to do with impact investing, Davos or stakeholder capitalism. It’s to do with criminality. To echo Willie Sutton, “So Mr. Naqvi, why’d you start a private equity fund?” “Because that’s where the money is”.

Drawing wider economic lessons from this is ridiculous.

Yes, obviously,

A former Labour MP sexually assaulted an aide in his Westminster office and fired her when she refused his advances, an employment tribunal has ruled.

Mike Hill, the former Hartlepool MP, was found to have repeatedly harassed his parliamentary staff member, and climbed into her bed and rubbed against her.

Mr Hill sexually assaulted the woman at work on more than one occasion, and victimised her when she rejected him by changing her employment terms and conditions then making her redundant.

Book ‘Im, Danno!

She said in her witness statement that Mr Hill had been her friend for several years when he suggested she moved to London to work in politics, and they live together in a flat to cut costs.

In September 2017, she claimed that he told her he loved her. When she rejected him, she claims he apologised and said he still wanted her to work and live with him in Pimlico, central London.

He continued to pursue her when they moved in together, the tribunal heard.

Perhaps not the wisest of moves…..

That you Rudy?

Eric Adams, borough president of Brooklyn who served in the New York Police Department for over two decades, won the party primary after a campaign promising to strike the right balance between public safety and ending racial injustice in policing.

“New York is going to show America how to run cities,” Mr Adams said on Wednesday as the final votes were being counted. “I understand crime, and I also understand police abuse, and I know how we can turn around not only New York, but America.”

Didn’t Rudy Giuliani already do this once?

No Love, this really doesn’t work

A legal challenge to prevent transgender inmates with convictions for sexual or violent offences against women being imprisoned alongside other women has been rejected by the high court.

A female former inmate, who claims she was sexually assaulted by a transgender women prisoner with a gender recognition certificate (GRC) while in HMP Bronzefield in 2017, asked judges to declare the justice secretary’s policies on the care and management of trans prisoners in England and Wales to be unlawful.

The claimant, known only as FDJ, argued her human rights were violated by having to be in the same prison as transgender women prisoners with convictions for sexual or violent offences against women.

As stated this is clearly the right decision. Because victory for the idea would mean that the human rights of a female prisoner would be violated if she were to be in prison with natal females who were convicted of sexual or violent offences against women.

Which, you know, doesn’t work.

Sure, there might be other reasons not to put meat and two veg in among the wimmins but this can’t be one of them.

Well, yes, and?

Child sex abuse victims have been accused of lying by police and ignored by mental health services, leading to suicide attempts, an official inquiry has found.

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) spoke to 56 victims and survivors of child sexual abuse between the ages of 11 and 21, and 77 specialist child sexual abuse support workers.

The findings, published in a report called Engagement with Children and Young People, show children claimed police accused them of lying when they tried to report abuse.

Some people who have claimed to have been abused children have indeed been lying. So, what is anyone supposed to do?

The Britten/Brammall case isn’t the only one either. The whole Satanic Abuse thing was made up out of whole cloth as well. And so on.

It’s also true that some to many children claiming abuse are not lying – abuse happened and they suffered it.

So, how to sort between these two situations?

Once more, eh?

Fewer than one in ten domestic abuse victims are seeing their attackers prosecuted because of a “shocking” failure by the police to pursue cases, says HM inspectors of police (HMI).

More than three quarters of cases of domestic abuse-related crimes are being dropped by officers without the perpetrator being charged, according to the investigation by HMI.

This represents an 18.6 per cent increase on the 59.5 per cent of cases shut five years ago, according to official data collected by the inspectorate. Just nine per cent resulted in a charge down from 23.2 per cent in 2016, with the remainder handled through cautions or community resolutions.

No. 90% of claims of domestic abuse do not lead to a charge. And a claim of a crime having been committed is not the same as a crime having been committed. This before we even get to ideas about enough evidence and all that.

As to the rate declining – we have in recent years been rather widening our societal definition of what constitutes abuse, haven’t we? So we’d expect claims to rise and fewer of them to meet the criminal standards…..

Quite right too

On Monday, a French woman, Valérie Bacot, will walk into a court to be tried for killing her stepfather turned husband. She has admitted shooting him dead and believes she should be punished.

In her defence, she is expected to tell the the hearing at at Chalon-sur-Saône in Burgundy how Daniel “Dany” Polette made her life hell from the day he raped her when she was 12, to the day he died 24 years later while prostituting her.

The ending of the story being right that is. We do indeed need to have a system which examines then sorts out such events.

Perhaps he was a complete bastard who deserved it. Perhaps it’s all a tissue of lies. So, some system is needed to see what really did happen. Who is – if anyone is – culpable and who – if anyone – should be punished.

Fortunately we have such a system, it’s called the courts and the individual process in a specific case is called a trial.

Good, so that’s sorted then.

Umm, yes, well…..

A member of the Rochdale gang who raped and groomed girls as young as 13 has said he should not be deported because he had not committed “that big a crime”.

Adil Khan, 51, and fellow gang member, Qari Rauf, 52, are fighting deportation by the Home Office, where they would be sent to Pakistan following convictions for serious sexual offences against young girls.

Khan, speaking through a translator, told an immigration tribunal hearing on Tuesday: “We are not that big a criminal. We have not committed that big a crime. I’m innocent. I’m not committing any crime. The journalists made us out to be big criminals.”

Sure, convicted criminal making a plea in court. Adjust expectations to suit.

But still, depends upon what you call a “big crime” really, doesn’t it?

Encryption, eh, encryption…..

This blokes in trouble then:

When an Australian underworld figure began distributing customised phones containing the app to his associates as a secure means to communicate, police could monitor their messages. The gangs believed the system was secure because the phones did not have any other capabilities – no voice or camera functions were loaded – and the app was encrypted.

Wonder where they broke it?

So that year and a day thing?

If they die more than a year and a day after the incident, not murder, if less, could be?

A man has been charged with murder following the death of a woman who died 21 years after being set on fire.

The year and a day is archaic? A guide not a rule? An invention by novelists?

Oh, right

We know there was an organised party taking place in the back garden of an address in Consort Road. Sasha was among around 30 guests at the party.

“Shortly before 3am, four black males wearing dark clothing have gained entry into the garden through a side entrance and in the ensuing melee a firearm has been discharged, injuring Sasha. The suspects have then fled the garden.

“Our work is ongoing to establish the motive for this attack but I want to reiterate that nothing has been brought to our attention that suggests Sasha was targeted. I would urge anyone who can help our investigation to get in touch so we can ensure these dangerous individuals are identified and arrested.”

Wonder if any of those who know who the four are will tell the social workers necessary for investigating crime these days who they were?

Catalans are indeed different

It’s the Neapolitans over the water who threaten to send you sleeping with the fishies:

The body of a missing man was found inside a papier-mâché dinosaur statue in a suburb of Barcelona, Spanish police reported, according to BBC News.

Police said a father and son noticed a smell coming from the Stegosaurus figure on display in Santa Coloma de Gramenet, and called police after the father saw the body through a crack in the dinosaur’s hollow leg.


Last week, Labour said the government should be held to specific targets to measure progress on male violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence, and said they would introduce a seven-year minimum sentence for rape.

Sigh. Juries are reluctant to convict for rape because what the woke definition is ain’t the same as what the population definition is. Raising the penalty will reduce the conviction rate therefore…..

Bird shooting

We can see the rival stories being trialled already:

“While the investigation is at an early stage, there is nothing to suggest that the woman who was shot was the subject of a targeted attack or that she had received any credible threats against her prior to this incident,” the force added.

In a statement posted online, the TTIP wrote: “It is with great sadness that we inform you that our own Sasha Johnson has been brutally attacked and sustained a gunshot wound to her head.

“She is currently in intensive care and in a critical condition. The attack happened in the early hours of this morning, following numerous death threats as a result of her activism.

“Sasha has always been actively fighting for black people and the injustices that surround the black community, as well as being both a member of BLM and a member of Taking the Initiative Party’s Executive Leadership Committee.

Shootings – around parties perhaps – in South London are not exactly unheard of. It’s possible that this was just one of those things. It’s also possible – possible – that this was a result of her activism.

And yet we know what we’re going to get told with ever increasing levels of shrillness, aren’t we? Martyr to the cause, victim of the imposition of structural racism……

But to a large extent the victim is on trial

Claire Waxman, London’s victims’ commissioner, welcomed it as “encouraging progress.”

“For too long, evidence of trauma, such as inconsistencies in memory, has been misinterpreted as victims being unreliable and has wrongly influenced charging decisions,” she said.

“Sadly, I know that some victims can find themselves subject to disproportionate scrutiny, and are left feeling like they are the one on trial.”

This is about rape, of course. And to a large extent the evidence of the victim is the very thing that is on trial. The entire definition of whether a crime took place or not is “I didn’t consent” and “There was consent”. Not even that this particular person is guilty or should be tried, but that there was a crime at all depends upon that.

Which is, therefore, the thing that is often on trial.

Well, yes, but…..

There’s nothing quite like Elizabeth Holmes’ case because there’s nothing quite like Silicon Valley,” says Danny Cevallos, a criminal lawyer who appears on MSNBC and NBC News.

One of the things about it is that it’s not really Silicon Valley. None of the traditional VC companies invested. An awful lot of people who wanted to be thought of as solid SV VCs did. It was much more a grift playing on the second and third tier than it was about SV itself….

All a bit Minority Report isn’t it?

Child sex offenders will face longer sentences under plans to punish them for their intentions.

The sentencing council has proposed that offenders who are caught before committing a sex attack should face tougher jail terms depending on the severity of the crime they intended to commit.

This would mean longer sentences for offenders even if they were intercepted by police or in a sting operation before they could engage in any sexual activity.

Previous guidelines from 2013 had been interpreted in some cases to allow lower sentences where there was no physical assault or meant that the absence of actual harm to the child was treated as a mitigating factor.

However, Justice Minister Chris Philp said: “Vile predators who seek to sexually abuse children deserve punishments that reflect the true severity of their crimes, including the harm intended.”

And it seems to abolish the idea of free will as well. Will they go through with it? We dunno, because they’ve got free will, haven’t they? The only certainty that someone will do something is when they do.

And, of course, if we’ve not got free will then there’s no point in punishing crime, is there – it’s just the universe what made them dun it, innit?

Oh, right

We also know that the corruption in Nigeria is inextricably linked to the corruption in cities such as London, New York and Paris. In 2020, Transparency International ranked Nigeria 149 for corruption and the United Kingdom only 11 (you want to be closer to 1) but how can this be when a large portion of Nigeria’s looted wealth is spent abroad?

It’s all our fault because the thieves spend it here…..

I’d support this yes

Post Office bosses should be prosecuted for overseeing the biggest miscarriage of justice in British legal history, MPs and victims said on Friday night.

I’d certainly support significant investigation into whether there should be prosecutions. The thing to be investigated not the installation of a cocked accounting system, something that is clearly true. Rather, the years and years of refusing, adamantly, to realise or admit that it was cocked. Effectively, the bureaucratic arrogance.

The Court ruled that the convictions were unsafe because they had been based on flawed evidence from the now discredited Horizon accounting computer system installed in Post Office branches in 1999.

Following the convictions, some of the 39 went to prison, lost their homes, were shunned by their communities and even failed to get insurance. A number of those convicted died before their names were cleared.

The Post Office used evidence based on the flawed Horizon system to prosecute a total of 736 people, many more of whom are now expected to go to the courts to have their own convictions quashed.

And there’s a lovely example of that arrogance. Why isn’t the PO scrambling to aid those 736?

The judges said: “Post Office Limited’s failures of investigation and disclosure were so egregious as to make the prosecution of any of the ‘Horizon cases’ an affront to the conscience of the court.”

That’s pretty bad you know…..

Inhibit, yes, probably so

Brian Sicknick, a Capitol police officer injured while confronting rioters during the 6 January insurrection, suffered a stroke and died of natural causes, the Washington DC medical examiner’s office ruled Monday, a finding that lessens the chances that anyone will be charged in his death.

Investigators initially believed the officer had been hit in the head with a fire extinguisher, based on statements collected early in the investigation, according to two people familiar with the case. And they later thought the 42-year-old Sicknick might have ingested a chemical substance – possibly bear spray – that could have contributed to his death.

But the determination of a natural cause of death means the medical examiner found that a medical condition alone caused his death – it was not brought on by an injury. The determination is likely to significantly inhibit the ability of federal prosecutors to bring homicide charges in Sicknick’s death.

As there was no homicide bringing homicide charges would be difficult, yes.