This is another hammer-blow against British justice – for all the reasons given below.
Pilot plans to allow police officers to interview suspects on the streets via body cameras, rather than at police stations, has raised concerns among civil liberties groups.
Currently, while the formal caution that police recite when arresting somebody states clearly that anything they say may be used in evidence against them, officers are not formally able to interview someone until they have been taken to a police station. Crucially, once at the police station, the suspect has the right to independent legal advice, and they are entitled to pre-interview disclosure.
This pre-interview disclosure is vitally important as it is designed to ensure the person and their legal representative understand why the person has been deprived of their liberty, the nature of the allegations made against them, and the reason why they have been arrested. Without this disclosure, and access to a solicitor, the suspect is extremely vulnerable, especially if unfamiliar with the complexities of the law.
Unsurprisingly, given the cuts to the police service, these proposals have nothing to do with access to justice, and are primarily concerned with saving money.
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