UK ministers twisted the knife on the ‘out of contact’ SNP at this time as Alex Salmond prepares to escalate its civil battle by giving bombshell proof about Nicola Sturgeon.  

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Justice Secretary Robert Buckland stated the brutal infighting and an ‘obsession’ with breaking apart the union was ‘distracting’ from the response to the pandemic.  

Scotland is bracing for an additional extraordinary day as Mr Salmond seems earlier than a Holyrood committee investigating the Scottish Authorities’s dealing with of allegations in opposition to him. 

The previous first minister had been on account of attend an proof session on Wednesday however he pulled out after the Scottish Parliament redacted his written submission detailing claims of a conspiracy and that Ms Sturgeon misled Parliament about what she knew. 

Because the temperature rose once more yesterday, Ms Sturgeon complained Mr Salmond was spreading a ‘harmful conspiracy concept’ by suggesting he was being censored to guard her.

The First Minister stated her former political mentor now most popular ‘creating an alternate actuality’ by which the ‘organs of the state… had been all a part of some wild conspiracy’ in opposition to him.

She additionally denied having any affect over the Crown Workplace’s choice to request that his assertion be redacted as her authorities faces rising accusations of corruption.

In a spherical of interviews this morning, Mr Buckland informed Sky Information: ‘The priorities of the individuals of Scotland are combating the virus and making an attempt to dwell with it, and get again to regular together with the remainder of the UK.

‘I feel they are going to be at finest puzzled and at worst dismayed by this fixed intrigue coming in opposition to the background of an obsessive mission by the SNP to name one other independence or separation referendum.

‘I’m afraid it’s displaying a political institution in Edinburgh that’s more and more out of contact with the fact of day-to-day life.’ 

Nicola Sturgeon

Alex Salmond

Alex Salmond is giving proof to a Holyrood inquiry at this time amid claims Nicola Sturgeon must stop if the previous first minister can show his claims that he was the sufferer of a conspiracy

Allegations, discussions, denials and a ‘forgotten’ key assembly between Sturgeon and Salmond

November 2017: Allegations concerning Alex Salmond’s behaviour are raised with the SNP by Sky Information.

Nicola Sturgeon stated she spoke to him about this – and he ‘denied it’. No additional motion was taken.

March 29, 2018: Ms Sturgeon meets Geoff Aberdein – Mr Salmon’s chief of workers – in her Scottish parliament workplace the place she has admitted they mentioned the opportunity of a gathering with Mr Salmond. Ms Sturgeon – after initially forgetting about this assembly – says there was ‘the suggestion that the matter would possibly relate to allegations of a sexual nature’.

April 2, 2018: Ms Sturgeon and Mr Salmond meet on the First Minister’s dwelling. In line with Ms Sturgeon, that is the primary time she heard of the complaints made in opposition to him. Regardless of this, she has insisted that the issues mentioned had been occasion enterprise.

September 14, 2018: A judicial overview is launched after complaints by Mr Salmond over the equity with how the claims in opposition to him had been dealt with.

January 8, 2019: The Scottish authorities conceded defeat within the judicial overview every week earlier than it was on account of launch. Mr Salmond wins £500,000 in authorized charges. The courtroom dominated the probe into Mr Salmond had been illegal and tainted by obvious bias.

January 2019: Ms Sturgeon tells MSPs that Mr Salmond first informed her a couple of probe into him on April 2. 

March 23, 2020: Alex Salmond is cleared of all sexual assault costs and his supporters demanded a full inquiry into the Scottish Authorities’s dealing with of the scandal.

October 7, 2020: Ms Sturgeon claims she ‘forgot’ about March 29, 2018, assembly with Mr Aberdein.

January 24, 2021: Talking on the Andrew Marr present, Ms Sturgeon denies deceptive the Scottish Parliament after ‘forgetting’ to inform MSPs about her assembly with Mr Salmond’s aide on March 29, 2018.

February 2021: The Excessive Court docket in Edinburgh guidelines Mr Salmond’s proof claiming his former chief of workers met with Ms Sturgeon on March 28, 2018, to debate sexual assault allegations in opposition to the previous first minister may be launched.

At a ferocious Holyrood session yesterday, Scottish Tory Ruth Davidson accused Ms Sturgeon of making an attempt to ‘save her personal pores and skin’ over the inquiry. 

She stated there was a ‘tradition of secrets and techniques and canopy up that’s solely rising and it’s all happening on Nicola Sturgeon’s watch’. 

She requested Ms Sturgeon throughout First Minister’s Questions at Holyrood: ‘First Minister, is saving your personal pores and skin value all of the injury that you’re doing?’

However Ms Sturgeon hit again and stated it was Ms Davidson’s status that was ‘disintegrating earlier than our eyes’ as she accused her counterpart of talking a ‘litany of nonsense’. 

The SNP chief additionally claimed that the ‘status and the integrity of Scotland’s impartial justice establishments’ was being ‘sacrificed… on the altar of the ego of 1 man’.  

Alex Neil, an SNP MSP and pal of Mr Salmond, has stated Ms Sturgeon and different senior figures must step down if the previous first minister can show he has been the sufferer of a ‘sew up’. 

Mr Neil stated the redacted proof is ‘elementary’ to Mr Salmond’s allegations ‘in opposition to the Scottish Authorities and the individuals who he believes tried to do him down’. 

Ms Sturgeon is because of seem earlier than the inquiry subsequent Wednesday. 

Civil servants have to this point refused to elucidate why they redacted probably the most explosive 474 phrases of Mr Salmond’s testimony that might power the SNP chief to resign.

Politicians stated the separation of energy between prosecutors, the civil service and the SNP had grow to be ‘indistinguishable’ and Scotland’s public establishments had been permitting themselves for use for political functions. 

A brand new ballot printed yesterday recommended the SNP’s bitter civil battle is beginning to hurt the occasion within the eyes of voters. 

The survey printed by Ipsos MORI confirmed simply over a 3rd of Scots (36 per cent) say the inquiry into the Scottish Authorities’s dealing with of accusations in opposition to Mr Salmond has made them much less beneficial in the direction of the SNP, though 58 per cent say it made no distinction to their view. 

Ms Sturgeon stated she anticipated to be ‘totally questioned on all of those issues once I sit earlier than that committee in the end on Wednesday of subsequent week’.   

She stated: ‘Scrutiny of me is, as I stated earlier, it will be significant, it’s essential, it’s totally authentic.

‘What is just not authentic is to pursue a conspiracy concept, a scorched earth coverage that threatens the status and the integrity of Scotland’s impartial justice establishments simply since you occur to dislike this authorities and to sacrifice all of that, if I could say so Presiding Officer, on the altar of the ego of 1 man.’

Ms Davidson claimed there was a ‘tradition of secrets and techniques and canopy up that’s solely rising and it’s all happening on Nicola Sturgeon’s watch’, as she added: ‘There is only one additional query I wish to ask. First Minister, is saving your personal pores and skin value all of the injury that you’re doing?’

Ruth Davidson and Ms Sturgeon repeatedly clashed at First Minister's Questions at Holyrood today

Ruth Davidson and Ms Sturgeon repeatedly clashed at First Minister’s Questions at Holyrood at this time

Will Alex Salmond’s proof be protected by Parliamentary privilege? 

Alex Salmond’s proof to the Holyrood inquiry will seemingly see explosive allegations made in opposition to the SNP’s management – together with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.  

The previous first minister’s written submissions to this point have been the topic of authorized wrangling, and had been ordered to be partially redacted by the Crown Workplace this week.

Prosecutors say his proof threatens the anonymity of his accusers, but critics have decried an try to silence him.  

Like Westminster, Holyrood has sure privileges to safeguard freedom of speech: 

1. Defamation 

Nothing stated within the ‘proceedings of the Scottish Parliament’ can type the premise of a defamation declare.

Part 41 of the Scotland Act ensures this ‘completely privilege’.

This is identical as in Westminster.

2. Contempt of courtroom

Not like Westminster, Holyrood is topic to contempt of courtroom legal guidelines.

It means somebody may be prosecuted, even when they dedicated the offence within the Scottish Parliament.

This consists of any info that might result in the identification of the feminine accusers.     

Ms Sturgeon replied: ‘A very powerful factor to me is the status of our nation, the integrity of our establishments and I’ll all the time act in a approach that protects precisely that.

‘There’s a status right here that I feel is maybe disintegrating earlier than our eyes and it isn’t mine could I say. Ruth Davidson has simply gone by there a litany of nonsense.’ 

The rising fury across the row is concentrated on a choice by the Scottish Parliament to redact Mr Salmond’s written testimony in opposition to Ms Sturgeon after a request from prosecutors on the Crown Workplace – only a day earlier than he was on account of give proof to an inquiry in individual.

Ms Sturgeon was peppered with questions concerning the affair at her every day coronavirus press briefing on Wednesday and stated the choice to censor Mr Salmond’s proof was not pressured by the federal government and was taken ‘independently’ by the Crown Workplace.

However she dodged a query about whether or not she lied about when she knew of the intercourse assault allegations in opposition to Mr Salmond, as he claims.

She stated: ‘Any suggestion, any in any respect, that these are in any approach politically influenced are downright fallacious. I might recommend they go additional than that, that they really begin to purchase into what’s a false and fairly harmful conspiracy concept that has no foundation actually.’

She stated of Mr Salmond: ‘Make no matter claims he desires to make, say no matter he desires to say, and convey no matter proof he thinks he has there.

‘There was no conspiracy concept and I typically assume that the choice maybe of Mr Salmond is to proceed to make these claims with out ever subjecting them to the correct scrutiny of the parliamentary committee trying into them.’

She later added: ‘Possibly creating an alternate actuality by which the organs of the state not simply me and the SNP, and the civil service and the Crown Workplace and the police and the ladies who got here ahead had been all a part of some wild conspiracy in opposition to him for causes I am unable to clarify.

‘Possibly that is simpler than accepting that on the root of this would possibly simply have been points in his personal behaviour. However that is for him to elucidate if he ever decides to pitch up and sit in entrance of the committee.’

MSPs and Mr Salmond referred to as for the Lord Advocate, the federal government’s chief authorized officer, to look earlier than parliament to elucidate why the proof that has the potential to wreck Ms Sturgeon has been censored – however had been repeatedly refused.

Parliament selected to censor probably the most explosive 474 phrases of Mr Salmond’s testimony which accuse the First Minister of mendacity to Parliament about her information of an investigation into sexual assault allegations in opposition to Mr Salmond.

The fury is focused on a decision by the Scottish Parliament to redact Mr Salmond's written testimony against Ms Sturgeon after a request from prosecutors at the Crown Office - just a day before he was due to give evidence to an inquiry in person. Pictured: Mr Salmond in March

The fury is concentrated on a choice by the Scottish Parliament to redact Mr Salmond’s written testimony in opposition to Ms Sturgeon after a request from prosecutors on the Crown Workplace – only a day earlier than he was on account of give proof to an inquiry in individual. Pictured: Mr Salmond in March

Sturgeon’s recognition drops 16 factors amid SNP civil battle as assist for independence tumbles

Assist for independence and Nicola Sturgeon‘s management have plummeted in Scotland within the wake of the SNP civil battle over Alex Salmond, a brand new ballot has revealed.

A majority of Scots nonetheless assist breaking apart the UK, however its lead fell by 4 per cent to 52 per cent, based on a survey by Ipsos Mori for STV. 

On the similar time, Ms Sturgeon’s private approval ranking fell by 16 factors to 32 per cent, among the many ongoing turmoil involving intercourse abuse allegations made in opposition to her predecessor. 

Greater than a 3rd (36 per cent) of these polled stated that the row had made them assume much less favourably in the direction of the SNP, together with greater than a fifth of those that voted for the occasion on the final common election.

Nevertheless, Ms Sturgeon’s occasion nonetheless retains the numbers to seal an general majority at Holyrood elections in Could – if the livid argument doesn’t blow any deeper chasms in occasion ranks.

If she is confirmed to have lied she may very well be pressured to resign, but the censors left hundreds of phrases of Mr Salmond’s testimony that don’t implicate Ms Sturgeon untouched.

The warning raises the prospect Mr Salmond may very well be prosecuted for contempt of courtroom if he discusses the allegations on the Holyrood inquiry and on Tuesday evening he pulled out of showing as a result of he stated the curbs on his proof would make it ‘unattainable’ for him to deal with MSPs.

Crown Workplace prosecutors declare the redacted testimony dangers enabling readers to piece collectively the id of his sexual assault accusers – however the Scottish Excessive Court docket beforehand dominated it doesn’t danger jigsaw identification and the doc has been public for 2 weeks.

There are at present two inquiries swirling within the Salmond/Sturgeon battle after he was cleared of 13 sexual assault accusations and his prosecutors had been discovered to have been influenced by ‘political bias’.

The primary inquiry is into the Scottish authorities’s dealing with of the allegations in opposition to Mr Salmond, and one other into whether or not Ms Sturgeon broke the ministerial code.

The primary is an SNP-led Holyrood committee arrange final yr, which has already heard controversial proof given by the present first minister’s husband and SNP chief government Peter Murrell.

However the second inquiry, led by James Hamilton QC, is geared toward Ms Sturgeon and whether or not she broke the ministerial code by mendacity to parliament about when she heard of the allegations in opposition to Mr Salmond. 

She informed the Scottish parliament she first heard of the claims on April 2, 2018, however backed down later after ‘forgetting’ and admitted assembly Mr Salmond’s former chief of workers Geoff Aberdein on March 29.

The a part of Mr Salmond’s testimony that has been censored explains how Ms Sturgeon met his chief of workers to debate the sexual allegations 4 days sooner than she informed Parliament she had.

Mr Salmond’s camp say that is proof that Ms Sturgeon orchestrated the investigation into sexual assault allegations and subsequent prosecution to cease his political comeback.

Before: Mr Salmond's testimony made claims against Ms Sturgeon and her office which have now been redacted

Earlier than: Mr Salmond’s testimony made claims in opposition to Ms Sturgeon and her workplace which have now been redacted

After: The Scottish Parliament redacted the most damning parts of Mr Salmond's bombshell evidence against Ms Sturgeon

After: The Scottish Parliament redacted probably the most damning elements of Mr Salmond’s bombshell proof in opposition to Ms Sturgeon

When confronted with the discrepancies in her proof, the SNP chief claimed she ‘forgot’ concerning the earlier assembly – regardless of it apparently being the primary event on which she realized of great sexual assault allegations about her political mentor.

Mr Salmond dismissed this declare as ‘untenable’ and has identified Mr Aberdein’s proof – which has not been printed in full – that the sexual assault claims had been raised intimately with the primary minister throughout their earlier assembly.

The ministerial code says ‘ministers who knowingly mislead parliament can be anticipated to supply their resignation to the primary minister’, however Ms Sturgeon has repeatedly waved off accusations she did.

If the Hamilton inquiry – which has not introduced when its findings can be launched – concludes she did break the ministerial code, it could seemingly spell an finish to Ms Sturgeon’s profession and doubtlessly torpedo the SNP within the Could elections and its hopes for an additional Scottish independence referendum.

Mr Salmond’s proof for the Hamilton inquiry was made public two weeks in the past after a authorized marketing campaign by the Spectator.

It was posted on the parliamentary inquiry’s web site on Monday.

However the Crown Workplace instantly demanded it was swiftly eliminated and closely redacted – eradicating claims in opposition to Ms Sturgeon by Mr Salmond – then republished.

The Crown Workplace – Scotland’s model of the CPS – got here underneath quick fireplace as politicians of all colors referred to as on the Lord Advocate and senior officers to make an ‘pressing assertion’ to parliament on why it had suggested Holyrood to make redactions.

Mr Salmond’s attorneys have requested the Lord Advocate to elucidate the ‘unprecedented and extremely irregular’ transfer by the Crown Workplace.

They stated in a press release: ‘What was the authorized foundation for the Crown’s intervention, when attorneys and counsel have accepted the submission as being totally compliant with Girl Dorrian’s judgment? Their recommendation is that they will see no authorized motive for this transfer.

‘Why did the Crown not complain till now concerning the paragraphs they’ve requested to be faraway from Mr Salmond’s submission, on condition that they’ve identified about these since earlier than fifteenth January they usually have been within the public area since then too?

What’s stopping Alex Salmond airing his proof?

The Crown Workplace’s censorship of Alex Salmond’s assertion implies that he may very well be prosecuted for contempt of courtroom if he makes an attempt to debate the redacted parts.

He had been on account of seem yesterday earlier than a Scottish Parliamentary inquiry into the dealing with of sexual assault allegations in opposition to him.

However he pulled out as a result of Scottish Parliamentary privilege doesn’t defend in opposition to contempt of courtroom, solely defamation.

He has beforehand threatened to carry a press convention to air his claims if he doesn’t get to talk earlier than the inquiry into the dealing with of sexual assault allegations in opposition to him.

MSPs will resolve whether or not they want to hear from him later within the week.

Scotland’s high lawyer James Wolffe QC is advising the federal government’s response to the Salmond papers in his function as Lord Advocate i cost of prosecutions.

However he additionally has a political connection to the Nicola Sturgeon’s in his function as the federal government’s precept authorized adviser.

He’s head of the Crown Workplace, which requested Mr Salmond’s submissions to the committee be redacted, saying it may very well be in contempt of courtroom.

The Lord Advocate attended the weekly Scottish Cupboard conferences till in 2007 Mr Salmond as first minister determined that function would now not attend the Scottish Cupboard, stating he wished to ‘de-politicise’ the put up.

He has to represented the Scottish Authorities in civil proceedings but additionally characterize the general public curiosity in a variety of statutory and customary legislation contexts.     

‘The Parliament additionally accepted the submission earlier than publishing it on the Inquiry web site.’

In an pressing query on Wednesday, Scottish Labour interim chief Jackie Baillie requested the Lord Advocate if he was consulted concerning the letter, to which he replied he was not and it was taken by senior senior skilled prosecutors.

She adopted up by asking if he was conscious of the letter or Procurator Fiscal Kenny Donnelly or if Crown agent David Harvey had been consulted. He replied: ‘I acquired a duplicate of the letter for my info after it had been issued.’ 

The Scottish Parliament Company Physique was pressured to carry an emergency assembly early on Tuesday after the Crown Workplace raised considerations over Mr Salmond’s submission.

Following recommendation from officers, Holyrood bosses agreed to censor the doc – eradicating 5 of the 33 sections, totalling practically 500 phrases.

The 36-page submission was initially printed on-line on Monday night by the Scottish parliament after weeks of manoeuvring over the previous SNP chief’s proof.

It was eliminated in its entirety on Tuesday morning earlier than being reissued with a collection of redactions.

In a letter to Holyrood officers, Mr Salmond’s attorneys stated that as a ‘substantial’ a part of his proof had been ‘deleted irrespective of him’, there was now a ‘vital authorized obstacle to his oral proof’.

They added: ‘It’s now clearly unattainable for him to attend tomorrow in these circumstances, however he stays keen to attend on Friday.

‘He accepts that’s totally within the arms of the committee, to whom he has requested that we copy this correspondence.’

Mr Salmond’s proof alleges there was a ‘deliberate, extended, malicious and concerted effort amongst a variety of people inside the Scottish Authorities and the SNP to wreck my status, even to the extent of getting me imprisoned’.

He names 5 of Ms Sturgeon’s high aides and civil servants accusing them of colluding in opposition to him in a ‘malicious’ plot to have him charged with 13 counts of sexual assault.

He referred to as for a few of them to resign and claims their conduct may quantity to a ‘conspiracy’ on the highest ranges in Scottish authorities.

He claimed within the submission the ‘inescapable conclusion’ was that there was a ‘malicious and concerted’ try to see him faraway from public life in Scotland.

Ms Sturgeon’s husband and SNP chief government Peter Murrell, Principal coverage adviser Leslie Evans, chief of workers Liz Lloyd, compliance officer Ian McCann and chief working officer Sue Ruddick had been all complicit in efforts to wreck his status, Mr Salmond says.

In his newest assertion, Mr Salmond alleged that whereas probing sexual assault claims in opposition to him, SNP officers had been additionally drafting the Equity at Work Coverage 2010.

SNP Chief Executive, Peter Murrell arrives to give evidence to a Scottish Parliament committee at Holyrood in December

SNP Chief Govt, Peter Murrell arrives to provide proof to a Scottish Parliament committee at Holyrood in December

Liz Lloyd, Nicola Sturgeon's Chief of Staff, at an SNP event at which Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon set out the next steps in the SNP's campaign for Scottish independence, on January 31, 2020

Leslie Evans, Permanent Secretary to the Scottish Government, is pictured as she gives evidence at Holyrood to a Scottish Parliament committee examining the handling of harassment allegations against former first minister Alex Salmond

Liz Lloyd (left), Nicola Sturgeon’s Chief of Workers, at an SNP occasion at which Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon set out the subsequent steps within the SNP’s marketing campaign for Scottish independence, on January 31, 2020. Proper: Leslie Evans, Everlasting Secretary to the Scottish Authorities, is pictured as she provides proof at Holyrood to a Scottish Parliament committee inspecting the dealing with of harassment allegations in opposition to former first minister Alex Salmond

Sue Ruddick (pictured) was also complicit in efforts to damage his reputation, Mr Salmond says

Sue Ruddick (pictured) was additionally complicit in efforts to wreck his status, Mr Salmond says

Nicola Sturgeon’s aides whom Alex Salmond accuses of being complicit in efforts to wreck his status

Nicola Sturgeon’s husband and SNP Chief Govt Peter Murrell

Peter Murrell has been chief government of the SNP since 1999.

The 56-year-old was educated at Craigmount Excessive Faculty and Glasgow College earlier than transferring into politics.

He later labored in the Banff and Buchan constituency workplace of former First Minister Alex Salmond, who he now faces accusations from.

He met Ms Sturgeon in 1988 on the constituency workplace they usually turned a pair in 2003.

The pair received married in July 2010 at Òran Mór Glasgow.

Chief of Workers Liz Lloyd

Nicola Sturgeon’s Chief of Workers Liz Lloyd isn’t any stranger to controversy.

Solely final month the particular adviser was blasted for tweeting criticism of Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

As a civil service she is meant to stay apolitical.

The principles say she ‘should not take public half in political controversy’, together with on ‘social media’.

Now she can be wrapped up in accusations she was a part of a ‘witch hunt’ to destroy Alex Salmond.

Ms Lloyd has been on the high of Scottish politics for practically a decade – being a Spad for 9 years and chief of workers for six years.

Earlier than that she was head of the SNP’s media operations for 4 years and an adviser to MSP Jim Mathers for 3 years earlier.

Edinburgh College educated Lloyd studied an MA in American research and an MSc in European and comparative public coverage earlier than getting into politics.

Her LinkedIn requires: ‘a powerful, profitable and impartial Scotland.’

Everlasting Secretary Leslie Evans

The pinnacle of Scotland’s civil service may very well be sacked from the function as MSPs put together to ‘throw her underneath the bus’.

Everlasting Secretary Leslie Evans is predicted to be slammed in a report on Holyrood’s dealing with of the Alex Salmond affair.

There are reportedly plans underway to get Ms Evans out of workplace sooner than her scheduled go away subsequent spring.

A supply informed The Sunday Occasions MSPs on the particular committee are ‘making ready to throw her underneath a bus’.

Ms Evans is a 62-year-old civil servant from Northern Eire who moved to Sheffield as a baby earlier than finding out music at Liverpool College.

She began dwelling in Scotland in 1985 and joined the federal government in 2000 after 20 years working in native authorities.

She was the primary girl to land the highest civil service job – from Could 2015 – and earns round £175,000 a yr.

Chief Working Officer Sue Ruddick 

The mom of three is the chief working officer for the Scottish Nationwide Occasion.

She labored in London as chief of workers for the SNP Westminster Group earlier than heading as much as Scotland.

Ms Ruddick had earlier than that been a parliamentary press and analysis assistant after being a component time swimming trainer.

The Aberdeen College educated politico has a grasp’s diploma in historical past and in addition took programs in German, Spanish, sociology, psychology and worldwide relations.

Her LinkedIn profile says: ‘A professional-active and gifted Communications Skilled with in depth expertise in company picture improvement and enterprise administration.

‘Confirmed monitor file of profitable design, implementation and administration of revolutionary communication methods resulting in vital will increase in effectivity and features for the corporate.’

Compliance Officer Ian McCann

Ian McCann is the purpose of contact at SNP Headquarters in Edinburgh, based on the occasion’s web site.

His Twitter bio says: ‘Two youngsters, two chins, eclectic style in movie and music. I principally keep away from dialogue of politics, but when I do, I reserve the precise to joke.’

He typically retweets First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and is adopted by SNP Westminster chief Ian Blackford.    

He claims Ms Lloyd drafted an modification in November 2017 to tweak a coverage to incorporate ‘former Ministers, together with from earlier administrations no matter Occasion’.

He makes the hyperlink between this e-mail and the claims made in opposition to him by the feminine complainants – which means he may very well be prosecuted. 

He says there was additionally a political intervention when Ms Sturgeon and the Everlasting Secretary agreed earlier than December 2017 that she must be distanced from the coverage and solely informed when it was performed.

Mr Salmond claims: ‘When the Everlasting Secretary agreed with the First Minister that she ought to take over as key choice maker when it comes to this new coverage she was already conscious of the growing complaints in opposition to me.

‘Due to this fact she put herself on the centre of a coverage within the full information that I might seemingly be the primary (and maybe solely given the following declaration of illegality) topic of its implementation. Doing so from a place of already being tainted by bias is a rare choice.’

He additionally says the Scottish authorities was suggested by exterior counsel in October 2018 that the ‘stability of likelihood’ was that ‘they had been heading for seemingly defeat’ in its case in opposition to him.

He stated: ‘And but, regardless of that recommendation and the price of a whole lot of hundreds of kilos of avoidable authorized charges, the Scottish Authorities pressed on with a case they anticipated to lose.’ 

He added: ‘Nevertheless, underlying all of this and maybe probably the most severe problem of all is the entire breakdown of the mandatory boundaries which ought to exist between Authorities, political occasion and certainly the prosecution authorities in any nation which abides by the rule of legislation.’

He additionally accused the Crown Workplace of ‘shielding a few of the strongest individuals within the nation’.

In his submission to the Hamilton inquiry, Mr Salmond stated had it not been for the jury system, a marketing campaign to take away him from public life might need ‘succeeded’.

In a special submission, Ms Lloyd ardently rejected being a part of a conspiracy and stated this was ‘not substantiated by any proof’.

She additionally denied leaking particulars of a Scottish Authorities inquiry into the allegations to the Every day Document newspaper.

In line with Mr Salmond, the ‘most blatant and compelling proof of such conduct’ is contained in supplies the Crown Workplace ‘refuses to launch’. He stated: ‘That call is disgraceful.’

Mr Salmond has referred to as for proof he obtained forward of his felony trial – however was not utilized in courtroom – to be launched by prosecutors, however they’ve refused.

He stated such a transfer ‘makes it unattainable for the Committee to finish its process; and that the ‘solely beneficiaries of that call to withhold proof are these concerned in conduct to wreck (and certainly imprison) me’.  

Mr Murrell has beforehand denied there was a conspiracy in opposition to Mr Salmond.

Mr Salmond has additionally used his remaining submission earlier than he’s anticipated to look at Holyrood to demand resignations over the affair, hitting out on the ‘actual price’ to the Scottish individuals which he believes to be ‘many thousands and thousands’ of kilos.

He stated: ‘Nobody on this course of has uttered the easy phrases essential on events to resume and refresh democratic establishments – ‘I resign’.’

Mr Salmond’s submission got here after he acquired letters from officers warning he may face prosecution if he shared or referenced supplies he had obtained for his felony trial and had hoped to make public.

Mr Salmond confronted 13 costs together with one in all tried rape, one in all intent to rape, 9 costs of sexual assault and two of indecent assault.

The ex-SNP chief was cleared of all costs by a jury following an 11-day trial on the Excessive Court docket in Edinburgh. The jury returned not responsible verdicts on 12 costs and returned a not confirmed verdict on a cost of sexual assault with intent to rape.

The previous first minister and Ms Sturgeon are the one two witnesses who’ve but to look earlier than the Holyrood inquiry inspecting the Scottish Authorities’s botched probe into harassment complaints in opposition to the previous First Minister.

He had the probe put aside after legally difficult the investigation. A courtroom then dominated it had been illegal and tainted by obvious bias.

Mr Salmond was awarded greater than £512,000 of taxpayer money in authorized charges. The Holyrood committee met yesterday to debate what motion to take subsequent and whether or not they may meet on Friday to listen to from Mr Salmond.

A spokesman for the Crown Workplace and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) stated: ‘We take critically our duty to uphold the legislation and to guard the dignity and rights of all those that come into contact with COPFS.

‘Scotland’s prosecutors have acted independently and within the public curiosity always when contemplating issues associated to this case.’

Submission by Alex Salmond – Section 4 – Ministerial Code

1

Submission by Alex Salmond – Section 4 – Ministerial

Code

Introduction

1. This can be a submission to the Parliamentary Committee underneath Section 4 of

the Inquiry. This submission is compliant with all authorized obligations underneath the

committee’s strategy to proof dealing with and takes full account of the Opinion

of Girl Dorrian within the Excessive Court docket as printed on sixteenth February 2021.

All WhatsApp messages between myself and the First Minister referred to on this

submission, have beforehand been offered to the Parliamentary Committee by

the First Minister and printed by the Committee.

The Phrases of Reference

2. Mr Hamilton, the impartial adviser on the Ministerial Code, wrote to me on

eighth September, twenty ninth October, sixteenth November, 4th and nineteenth December. I replied

on sixth and seventeenth October, twenty third November and twenty third December. I lastly agreed

underneath some protest to make a written submission.

The explanation for my concern was that the remit drawn up for Mr Hamilton focuses

on whether or not the First Minister intervened in a civil service course of. As I’ve

identified to Mr Hamilton, I do know of no provisions within the Ministerial Code

which makes it improper for a First Minister to so intervene.

3. On the contrary, intervention by the First Minister in an apparently illegal

course of (subsequently confirmed by the Court docket of Session) wouldn’t represent a

breach exactly as a result of the First Minister is underneath an obligation in clause 2.30 of the

Ministerial Code to keep away from such illegality on the a part of the Authorities she leads.

4. Additional, to recommend intervention was a breach could be to disregard and

contradict the specific reliance of the process on the place of the First

Minister because the chief of the occasion to which the previous minister was a member in

order to manage some unspecified sanction.

5. It should accordingly be a major shock if any breach of the Ministerial

Code is discovered when the phrases of reference have been tightly drafted by the

Deputy First Minister to concentrate on that facet of the First Minister’s conduct.

6. In contrast, I’ve info which suggests different associated breaches of the

Ministerial Code which ought to correctly be examined by Mr Hamilton. I’ve

2

requested that he undertake that investigation. I’ve drawn his consideration to the

obvious parliamentary assurance from the First Minister on twenty ninth October 2020

that there was no restriction on Mr Hamilton stopping him from doing so.

7. Mr Hamilton has failed to provide me a transparent response as as to if these associated

issues related to the Ministerial Code, however outwith the precise remit, are

going to be thought of. Nevertheless, in his letter of 4th December he did point out

that he was inclined to the view that such issues may very well be thought of and can

take note of arguments for his or her inclusion. Since that point I perceive

members of the Committee have acquired additional assurances. It’s on that foundation I

make this submission.

8. In doing so, I might word that it doesn’t serve the general public curiosity if the

impartial technique of examination of the Ministerial Code (which I launched

as First Minister) is predetermined, or seen to be predetermined, by a restrictive

remit given by the Deputy First Minister.

9. A restricted investigation wouldn’t obtain its goal of real

impartial dedication and would undermine confidence in what has been a

helpful innovation in public accountability.

10. I might accordingly urge Mr Hamilton to embrace the independence of his

function and the specific assurance given to the Scottish Parliament by the First

Minister that he’s free to increase the unique remit drafted by the Deputy First

Minister and to deal with every of the issues contained on this submission.

Breaches of the Ministerial Code.

11. Past the phrases of the remit set for Mr Hamilton by the Deputy First

Minister, there are different points of the conduct of the First Minister which, in my

submission, require scrutiny and dedication in relation to breaches of the

Ministerial Code.

12. I used to be contacted by cellphone on or round 9 March 2018 and additional the

following week by Geoff Aberdein, my former Chief of Workers. The aim of the

contact was to inform me about conferences he had held with the First Minister’s Chief

of Workers, Liz Lloyd, at her request.

13. Within the second of those conferences she had knowledgeable him that she was conscious of

two complaints regarding me underneath a brand new complaints course of launched to

embody former Ministers. She named one of many complainers to him. At that stage

I didn’t know the id of the opposite complainer.

14. On receipt of the letter from the Everlasting Secretary first informing me of

complaints on seventh March 2018 I had secured Levy and McRae as my solicitors

and Duncan Hamilton, Advocate and Ronnie Clancy QC as my counsel.

15. Even at this early stage we had recognized that there have been a variety of great

deficiencies within the process. There was no public or parliamentary file of it

3

ever being adopted. As well as it contained many points of each procedural

unfairness and substantive illegality. There was an apparent and quick

query over the respect to which the Scottish Authorities even had

jurisdiction to think about the complaints. In relation to former Ministers (in

distinction to present Ministers) it provided no alternative for mediation. The

complaints process of which I used to be acquainted (‘Equity at Work’) was based mostly on

the legislative basis of the Ministerial Code by which the First Minister was

the ultimate choice maker. I wanted to deliver all of those issues to the eye of

the First Minister. I didn’t know at that stage the diploma of data and

involvement within the coverage on the a part of each the First Minister and her Chief of

Workers.

16. Mr Aberdein had been requested by Ms Lloyd to be her contact with me they usually

collectively organized a gathering with the First Minister within the Scottish Parliament on

twenty ninth March 2018. This assembly was for the aim of discussing the complaints

and thereafter arranging a direct assembly between myself and the First Minister.

There was by no means the slightest doubt what the assembly was about. Any suggestion

by the First Minister to the Scottish Parliament (Official Report, eighth October

2020) that the assembly was ‘fleeting or opportunistic’ is solely unfaithful. It was

agreed on the twenty ninth March 2018 on the assembly within the Scottish Parliament

attended by Mr Aberdein and the First Minister and one other person who the

assembly between myself and the First Minister would happen on 2nd April at

her dwelling close to Glasgow. Self-evidently solely the First Minister may problem that

invitation to her personal dwelling.

17. In attendance on the assembly on 2nd April 2018 had been Mr Aberdein, Mr

Hamilton, Ms Lloyd and myself. The First Minister and I met privately after which

there was a common dialogue with all 5 of us. My goal was to alert the

First Minister to the illegality of the method (not being conscious at the moment of her

involvement in it) and to hunt an intervention from the First Minister to safe a

mediation course of to resolve the complaints.

18. I used to be properly conscious that underneath the Ministerial Code the First Minister ought to

notify the civil service of the dialogue and believed that this might be the purpose

at which she would make her views identified. The First Minister assured us that

she would make such an intervention at an applicable stage.

19. On twenty third April 2018, I phoned the First Minister by

association on WhatsApp to say {that a} formal supply of mediation was being

made by way of my solicitor to the Everlasting Secretary that day. Within the occasion ,

this supply was declined by the Everlasting Secretary, even earlier than it was put to the

complainers.

20. By the tip of Could, it was changing into clear that the substantial arguments my

authorized staff had been making in correspondence in opposition to the legality of the process

weren’t having any influence with the Everlasting Secretary. My authorized staff

suggested that it was unattainable correctly to defend myself in opposition to the complaints

underneath such a flawed process. They suggested {that a} petition for Judicial Overview

would have glorious prospects of success given the Authorities had been performing

4

unlawfully. Nevertheless I used to be extraordinarily reluctant to sue the Authorities I as soon as led.

I wished to keep away from the injury each to the Scottish Authorities and the SNP

which might inevitably outcome. To keep away from such a drastic step, I resolved to let the

First Minister see the draft petition for Judicial Overview. As a lawyer, and as First

Minister, I assumed that she would see the authorized jeopardy into which the

authorities was drifting. I subsequently sought an additional assembly.

21. On 1st June 2018 the First Minister despatched me a message which was the

reverse of the peace of mind she had given on the 2nd April 2018 suggesting

as a substitute that she had all the time stated that intervention was ‘not the precise factor to do’.

That was each unfaithful and disturbing. On third June 2018 I despatched her a message on

the implications for the Authorities in shedding a Judicial Overview and pointing to

her obligation (underneath the Ministerial Code) to make sure that her administration

was performing lawfully and (underneath the Scotland Act) to make sure that their actions

had been compliant with the European Conference.

22. The First Minister and I met in Aberdeen on seventh June 2018 once I requested

her to have a look at the draft Judicial Overview Petition. She did briefly however made it clear

she was now disinclined to make any intervention.

23. My need to keep away from damaging and costly litigation remained. My authorized

staff thereafter provided arbitration as a substitute for placing the matter earlier than

the Court docket of Session. That proposal was designed to supply a fast and comparatively

cheap technique of demonstrating the illegality of the process in a course of

which assured the confidentiality of the complainers. It could even have

demonstrated the illegality of the method in a discussion board which might be a lot much less

damaging to the Scottish Authorities than the following public declaration of

illegality. I used to be ready at the moment to have interaction totally with the process within the

occasion my authorized recommendation was incorrect. Within the occasion, in fact, it was sturdy. I

defined the benefits of such an strategy to the First Minister in

a Whatsapp message of fifth July 2018.

24. On the First Minister’s initiative which I used to be knowledgeable about on the thirteenth July

we met as soon as once more at her dwelling in Glasgow at her request, the next day, 14th

July 2018. There was nobody else at this assembly. She particularly agreed to

appropriate the impression that had been recommended to my counsel in dialogue

between our authorized representatives that she was against arbitration. I

adopted this up with a WhatsApp message on the sixteenth July 2018.

25. On 18th July 2018 the First Minister phoned me at 13.05 to say that

arbitration had been rejected and recommended that this was on the recommendation of the

Regulation Officers. She urged me to submit a substantive rebuttal of the precise

complaints in opposition to me, recommended that the overall complaints already answered

had been of little consequence and could be dismissed, after which assured me that my

submission could be judged pretty. She informed me I might obtain a letter from the

Everlasting Secretary providing me additional time to submit such a rebuttal

which duly arrived later that day. Because it turned out the rebuttal as soon as submitted

was given solely cursory examination by the Investigating Officer in the middle of

a single day and he or she had already submitted her remaining report back to the Everlasting

5

Secretary. My view is now that it was believed that my submission of a rebuttal

would weaken the case for Judicial Overview (my involvement in rebutting the

substance of the complaints being seen to remedy the procedural unfairness) and

that the First Ministers cellphone name of 18th July 2018 and the Everlasting

Secretary’s letter of the identical date suggesting that it was in my ‘pursuits’ to

submit a substantive response was designed to realize that.

26. By way of the conferences with me, the one breaches of the Ministerial Code

are the failure to tell civil servants timeously of the character of the conferences.

27. My view is that the First Minister ought to have knowledgeable the Everlasting

Secretary of the authorized dangers they had been working and ensured a correct examination

of the authorized place and happy herself that her Authorities had been performing

lawfully.

28. Additional as soon as the Judicial Overview had commenced, and on the very newest by

October thirty first 2018 the Authorities and the First Minister knew of authorized recommendation

from exterior counsel (the First Minister consulted with counsel on thirteenth

November) that on the stability of likelihood they might lose the Judicial Overview

and be discovered to have acted unlawfully. Regardless of this the authorized motion was

continued till early January 2019 and was solely conceded after each

Authorities exterior counsel threatened to resign from the case which they

thought of to be unstateable. This, on any studying, is opposite to part 2.30 of

the Ministerial Code.

29. Most critically, Parliament has been repeatedly misled on a variety of

events concerning the nature of the assembly of 2nd April 2018.

30. The First Minister informed Parliament (see Official Report of eighth,tenth & seventeenth

January 2019) that she first realized of the complaints in opposition to me once I visited

her dwelling on 2nd April 2018. That’s unfaithful and is a breach of the Ministerial

Code.

The proof from Mr Aberdein that he personally mentioned the existence of the

complaints, and summarised the substance of the complaints, with the First

Minister in a pre organized assembly in Parliament on twenty ninth March 2018 organized

for that particular goal can’t be reconciled with the place of the First

Minister to Parliament. The truth that Mr Aberdein realized of those complaints in

early March 2018 from the Chief of Workers to the First Minister who thereafter

organized for the assembly between Mr Aberdein and the First Minister on twenty ninth

March to debate them, is supported by his sharing that info

contemporaneously with myself, Kevin Pringle and Duncan Hamilton, Advocate.

31. In her written submission to the Committee, the First Minister has

subsequently admitted to that assembly on twenty ninth March 2018, claiming to have

beforehand ‘forgotten’ about it. That’s, with respect, untenable. The pre-arranged

assembly within the Scottish Parliament of twenty ninth March 2018 was ‘forgotten’ about

as a result of acknowledging it could have rendered ridiculous the declare made by the

First Minister in Parliament that it had been believed that the assembly on 2nd

6

April was on SNP Occasion enterprise (Official Report eighth & tenth January 2019) and

thus held at her personal residence. In actuality all individuals in that assembly had been

totally conscious of what the assembly was about and why it had been organized. The

assembly happened with a shared understanding of the problems for dialogue –

the complaints made and the Scottish Authorities process which had been

launched. The First Minister’s declare that it was ever considered about

something aside from the complaints made in opposition to me is wholly false.

The failure to account for the assembly on twenty ninth March 2018 when making a

assertion to Parliament, and thereafter failing to appropriate that false

illustration is an additional breach of the Ministerial Code.

Additional, the repeated illustration to the Parliament of the assembly on the 2nd

April 2018 as being a ‘occasion’ assembly as a result of it proceeded in ignorance of the

complaints is fake and manifestly unfaithful. The assembly on 2nd April 2018 was

organized as a direct consequence of the prior assembly concerning the complaints held

within the Scottish Parliament on twenty ninth March 2018.

32. The First Minister moreover knowledgeable Parliament (Official Report tenth

January 2019) that ‘I didn’t understand how the Scottish Authorities was dealing

with the criticism, I didn’t understand how the Scottish Authorities supposed to

take care of the criticism and I didn’t make any effort to learn how the Scottish

Authorities was coping with the criticism or to intervene in how the Scottish

Authorities was coping with the criticism.’

I might distinction that place with the factual place at paragraphs 18 and 25

above. The First Minister’s place on that is merely unfaithful. She did initially

supply to intervene, within the presence of all these on the First Ministers home on the

2nd April 2018. Furthermore, she did have interaction in following the method of the

criticism and certainly reported the standing of that course of to me personally.

33. I additionally imagine it must be investigated additional when it comes to the Ministerial

Code, whether or not the felony leak of a part of the contents of the Everlasting

Secretary’s Choice report back to the Every day Document was sourced from the First

Minister’s Workplace. We now know from a press release made by the Every day Document

editor that they acquired a doc. I enclose at Appendix B the abstract of

the ICO overview of the criticism which explains the felony nature of the leak

and the identification of 23 potential workers sources of the leak on condition that the ICO

Prosecutor has ‘sympathy with the speculation that the leak got here from an

worker of the Scottish Authorities’. My reasoning is as follows. The leak did

not come from me, or anybody representing me. In truth I sought interdict to

forestall publication and injury to my status. The leak could be very unlikely

certainly to have come from both of the 2 complainers. The Chief Constable,

accurately, refused to just accept a duplicate of the report when it was provided to Police

Scotland on August twenty first 2018 by the Crown Agent. It can not, subsequently have

leaked from Police Scotland. Scottish Authorities officers had not leaked the

truth of an investigation from January when it began. The one extra group

of individuals to have acquired such a doc, or abstract of such a doc, in

the week previous to publication within the Every day Document was the First Minister’s Workplace

7

as indicated in paragraph 4.8 of the ICO Prosecutor’s Report. In that workplace,

the doc could be accessed by the First Minister and her Particular Advisers.

I might be joyful to assist this submission in oral proof.

Rt Hon Alex Salmond

seventeenth February 2021

Wycliffe Home, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF

T. 0303 123 1113 F. 01625 524510

www.ico.org.uk

Our ref: CH/IC/0295/2018

Mr David McKie

Levy & McRae

Pacific Home

70 Wellington Avenue

Glasgow

G2 GUA

By e-mail solely:

Dated 28 Could 2020

Pricey Mr McKie

Re: Your Consumer – Mr A. Salmond/ Your Ref DMK/LL/STE039-0001

1. Introduction

1.1 Additional to a request made on behalf of your above consumer, I’ve been

requested to overview a choice made by the Prison Investigations Group

(CRIT) on the ICO to discontinue an investigation into potential offences

underneath s.170 Information Safety Act (DPA) 2018, in accordance with the

Victims Proper to Overview scheme.

1.2 I’m a Solicitor (Prosecutor) based mostly inside the Regulatory Enforcement

Group on the ICO. I affirm that I’ve had no earlier dealings with

the matter.

1.3 My remit is to think about whether or not, having investigated the criticism, the

choice made by the investigations staff to not examine additional was

appropriate and cheap.

[Redacted]

Appendix B

1.4 I’ve had full entry to, and have rigorously reviewed, all materials

gathered and held by CRIT throughout the course of their investigations.

1.5 The overview considerations the result of an investigation right into a criticism

made underneath s.165 DPA 2018 on behalf of Mr Salmond to the ICO on

the 29 October 2018.

1.6 The criticism pertained to the suspected illegal acquiring and

disclosing of non-public knowledge regarding Mr Salmon to the press in August

2018; a possible offence underneath s.170 DPA 2018.

1.7 The information was contained inside a report regarding the result of an

inner misconduct investigation, which was leaked to the press on the

23 August 2018 and printed within the Every day Document on 23 and 25 August

2018.

1.8 Moreover, the very fact and content material of authorized recommendation from the Lord

Advocate to the Scottish Authorities concerning the allegations made

in opposition to Mr Salmond had been reported in an article in The Sunday Submit

printed on the twenty sixth August 2018 and once more in The Herald on 12

November 2018.

2. Related Regulation

2.1 Underneath s.170 DPA 2018, it’s an offence to, knowingly or recklessly,

acquire, disclose, procure disclosure or retain private knowledge with out the

consent of the info controller.

2.2 The knowledge contained within the inner misconduct report and the

authorized recommendation was extremely delicate and private, in that it associated to

allegations of misconduct made in opposition to Mr Salmond. It could definitely

meet the definition of ‘private knowledge’ pertaining to a dwelling particular person as

per s.3(2) DPA 2018.

2.3 It was clear from the occasions set out within the criticism despatched on behalf of

Mr Salmond that the private knowledge had certainly been obtained and

disclosed to the press.

2.4 The following investigation by the ICO was to ascertain whether or not any

particular person may very well be recognized and doubtlessly prosecuted for the illegal

acquiring and/or disclosing of the info underneath s.170 DPA 2018.

2.5 The offence of unlawfully acquiring and/or disclosing private knowledge

opposite to s.170 DPA 2018 is an offence dedicated in opposition to the info

controller. On this matter, the private knowledge contained within the inner

misconduct investigation report and in authorized recommendation from the Lord

Advocate, belonged to the Scottish Authorities (SG).

2.6 The SG was subsequently the info controller in accordance with s.3(6) DPA

2018 and the potential complainant on this matter.

2.7 As the info topic underneath s.3(5) DPA 2018, Mr Salmond would

nonetheless even be classed as a ‘sufferer’. Any influence on him ensuing from

the offence would in fact subsequently be an essential consideration in

ascertaining the extent of hurt attributable to the offence.

2.8 The problem for the investigations staff was whether or not the supply of the

knowledge leak may very well be recognized, to allow a prosecution to be introduced

in opposition to the person accountable underneath s.170 DPA 2018.

3. Overview of the proof

3.1 With a view to determine a suspect, it could be essential to determine

the strategy of disclosure used.

3.2 A forensic examination of the IT techniques utilized by the SG was carried out

as a part of the Information Dealing with Overview carried out by the Information Safety

Officer on the SG following the info leak.

3.3 No proof was discovered that knowledge was leaked by e-mail, doc

sharing or downloading to moveable media system. Moreover, no

proof was discovered {that a} third occasion had unlawfully accessed the SG’s

IT techniques.

3.4 With out an digital path to comply with, it was troublesome to uncover the

technique of disclosure used.

3.5 To progress the investigation, a witness could be wanted who

could be keen to supply details about the strategy of disclosure

(for instance, by exhausting copy being handed in individual) and the id of

the perpetrator.

3.6 The Every day Document had declined to supply info as to how or by

whom they got here by the copy of the report, counting on the journalistic

exemption inside the DPA 2018, clause 14 of the Editors Code of

Apply and s.10 of the Contempt of Court docket Act 1981.

3.7 23 members of workers had been recognized as having information of, or

involvement in, the interior misconduct enquiry. These members of

workers had been interviewed by the Information Safety Officer on the SG as half

of their Information Dealing with Overview. The interviews didn’t disclose any

info which might allow a suspect to be recognized.

3.8 Within the absence subsequently of any additional info coming to mild, or

any witness coming ahead, there was inadequate proof to level to

any particular suspect and to permit the investigation to maneuver ahead.

4. Representations on behalf of Mr Salmond

4.1 Along with all the fabric offered by the SG, I’ve additionally

thought of the representations made on behalf of Mr

Salmond in earlier correspondence with Levy & McRae, particularly

the submission that the timing of the leak to the press raises an

irresistible conclusion that the leak got here from inside the SG.

4.2 The leak got here a couple of hours after the SG had notified their intention to

publish a press launch and really shortly after Levy & McRae had given

discover of their intention to use for an interim interdict. The impact of

the leak was to defeat the courtroom motion as a result of the knowledge was by

then within the public area.

4.3 I’ve additionally thought of the assertion of Detective Chief Superintendent

, helpfully offered by Levy & McRae. The assertion

confirms that at a gathering on the 21 August 2018, the police had been

provided a duplicate of the interior misconduct investigation report however

refused to take it. Moreover, at that assembly, DCS voiced

[Redacted]

[Redacted]

considerations concerning the SG making a public assertion concerning the consequence of

their investigations.

4.4 Levy & McRae level to this assertion to indicate that the SG (or an

worker thereof) wished the knowledge to get into the general public area

and to indicate that the police are extremely unlikely to have been the supply

of the leak.

4.5 The SG despatched a proposed press launch to Levy & McRae on the 23

August. In response, Levy & McRae notified the SG of their intention to

apply for an interim interdict. The SG responded by confirming that

they might not problem the press launch within the meantime. Occasions had been

then in fact overtaken by the leak of the knowledge to the press and

into the general public area.

4.6 I’ve sympathy with the speculation that the leak got here from an

worker of the SG and agree that the timing arguably may elevate such

an inference. It was nonetheless essential to determine a suspect.

4.7 The interviews with the related workers members did not present any leads

nonetheless and no different individual had come ahead volunteering

info.

4.8 There stays the likelihood that the leak got here from elsewhere. The

checklist of stakeholders who had entry to the interior misconduct

investigation report consists of the unique complainants, the QC, the First

Minister’s Principal Personal Secretary, the Crown Workplace & Procurator

Fiscal Service and Mr Salmond and Levy & McRae, in addition to the

related workers members of the SG.

4.9 The checklist of stakeholders who had entry to the authorized recommendation offered by

the Lord Advocate throughout the misconduct investigation included workers

inside the Lord Advocate’s workplace, the Everlasting Secretary’s Workplace and

officers within the SG’s Authorized Directorate.

4.10 Following investigation, there was no proof to determine any particular

particular person inside these lists, or any member of workers working for anyone

inside these lists, as a possible suspect.

5. Overview of choice by CRIT

5.1 As investigators, CRIT should have regard to the provisions of the

Prison Procedures and Investigations Act 1996, particularly

s.23(1) Code of Apply Half II.

5.2 Level 3.5 supplies that the investigator shall pursue all cheap traces

of inquiry. CRIT have an obligation subsequently to research knowledge complaints to

an applicable extent.

5.3 Throughout this investigation, it’s clear that CRIT gathered in depth

info from the SG, searching for additional info and clarification

the place wanted.

5.4 The outcome was no suspect may very well be recognized from the proof collated

and the choice was taken that the investigation couldn’t be

progressed with out additional info coming to mild.

5.5 I’m happy that the criticism had been investigated to an

applicable extent, with all cheap avenues of inquiry thought of

and/or pursued.

5.6 When deciding whether or not to proceed to prosecute in any case, I’m

required to use the 2 stage check prescribed by the Code for Crown

Prosecutors issued by the Crown Prosecution Service.

5.7 The primary stage is to think about whether or not there may be enough proof to

present a sensible prospect of conviction. With out a suspect, there may be

merely no reasonable prospect of conviction as a result of there may be no person to

prosecute and/or convict. I don’t subsequently even attain the second

stage of the check, which is to think about whether or not it could be within the public

curiosity to prosecute.

5.8 I’m happy that within the absence of any suspect, the choice to

discontinue the investigation was appropriate and cheap in all of the

circumstances.

5.9 If additional info involves mild, for instance if a witness comes

ahead, then I’ve little doubt that the matter could be correctly

revisited. Nowadays, nonetheless, I’m happy that there aren’t any

grounds to re-instate the investigation.

Yours sincerely,

Solicitor (Prosecutor)

[Redacted]

James Hamilton

Impartial Adviser on the Scottish Ministerial Code

c/o E:

Alex Salmond,

c/o Levy & McRae

Pacific Home

70 Wellington St

Glasgow

G26UA

8 September 2020

Pricey Mr Salmond,

SCOTTISH MINISTERIAL CODE: FIRST MINISTER’S SELF-REFERRAL

As you could know, I’ve been appointed because the impartial adviser to think about the First

Minister’s self-referral underneath the Ministerial Code. I connect a duplicate of the Parliamentary

reply which units out the remit for the referral.

My goal in writing is to hunt your cooperation in my enquiries, and to request from you a

vary of data to help me in making ready my report.

I might be grateful if you happen to would provide me with a common assertion about your actions and

involvement within the issues lined by my remit.

This could embody, however not be restricted to: a sign of what had been the intentions that lay

behind your actions and, particularly, the collection of contacts that you simply had with the First

Minister; and, another info that might help me in my issues.

Along with a common assertion, I might welcome your response to a collection of particular

questions as follows:

1. Particulars of all contacts you, or anybody representing you, had with the First Minister or any

civil servant or particular advisor between 16 January 2018, when the primary criticism was

made underneath the Scottish Authorities’s Process for the Dealing with of Harassment

Complaints involving Present or Former Ministers, and 18 July 2018, when a second

phone dialog happened, which, based on the First Minister, was the final

contact between the First Minister and your self. May you additionally present particulars of the

goal of your communication with the First Minister?

[Redacted]

Appendix C

EMAIL EXCHANGES BETWEEN MR ALEX SALMOND AND

MR JAMES HAMILTON

1. Mr Salmond to Mr Hamilton

thirty first December 2020

Pricey

Correspondence for Mr Hamilton

Please see connected correspondence, submission and two

appendices for the eye of Mr James Hamilton. Please

affirm receipt and thanks to your help.

Finest needs for 2021

Yours for Scotland

Alex Salmond

2. Mr Hamilton to Mr Salmond

nineteenth December 2020

Pricey Mr. Salmond,

Additional to my letter of seven December 2020, I repeat my enquiry

whether or not you are ready to supply a written assertion to assist

me with my investigation. It could be very useful to have a

written assertion from you, with as a lot info as you

really feel capable of present, setting out your responses to the questions

included in earlier correspondence.

[Redacted]

Appendix D

As you might be conscious the Ministerial Code supplies that the First

Minister could refer issues to the impartial advisers to

present her with recommendation on which to base her judgment about

any motion required in respect of Ministerial conduct. The First

Minister has made such a referral to me on foot of which I’ve

sought written statements from all of the individuals whom I’ve

recognized as prone to have proof related to that remit. I

have now acquired written statements from each individual whom

I’ve so recognized besides you.

As you might be additionally conscious I’ve no energy to compel any individual to

cooperate with me. That being so I have to formulate my recommendation

on the proof and knowledge which is on the market to me. I additionally

take into account that the First Minister is entitled to count on that I’ll do

so in a fairly expeditious method.

I subsequently now intend to finish my consideration of written

statements as quickly as potential. To ensure that any assertion from

you to type a part of that consideration I might want to obtain it

at once. For those who do intend to make a press release I might

respect it if you happen to may let me know once I would possibly count on to

obtain it, in any other case I shall assume that you’ve got determined not

to grow to be concerned on this course of.

Yours sincerely,

James Hamilton

3. Mr Hamilton to Mr Salmond

Dated 4th December 2020 however emailed on seventh December

2020

Pricey Mr. Salmond

Thanks to your letter of 23 November despatched by way of e-mail to

.

I take into account it essential to ensure that me to fulfil my remit that I

acquire a full understanding of what was the aim of the

conferences between you and the First Minister and what occurred

at them. Your proof is subsequently of nice significance to me.

I’m ready to think about any arguments you could want to

advance concerning the scope of my remit. Nevertheless, till I do know

what proof you want to give it could be untimely for me to

type a determined opinion on whether or not the remit must be

prolonged or, within the occasion that I accepted the case for an

extension, on how I ought to then proceed.

My inclination is to assume that within the case of issues which type

a part of, or are intently associated to, the subject material of the remit it

may very well be open to me to think about whether or not any provisions of the

Ministerial Code aside from these talked about expressly within the

remit had been damaged. Nevertheless, that scenario is distinct from

broadening the factual scope of the inquiry. I’m, in fact,

ready to think about any arguments you could want to make

earlier than coming to a remaining conclusion on this level.

Though the process for an inquiry by an impartial

advisor underneath the Ministerial Code is a comparatively casual one

the foundations of pure justice apply together with particularly my

obligation to listen to each side of any query which arises for

dedication. This, for my part, extends not solely to the

[Redacted]

consideration of proof but additionally to any questions which can

come up as to the scope of the remit.

It follows that if a query arises as as to if a specific

matter may be considered falling inside the scope of the remit

or, if it doesn’t, whether or not that scope must be expanded, it

could be fallacious of me to take a determined view on these points

based mostly solely in your submissions with out additionally giving the First

Minister a possibility to touch upon them.

I might subsequently recommend that you simply let me see your proposed

proof as quickly as potential, along with any observations

you could want to make concerning the scope of the remit. If

essential I’ll then search the First Minister’s observations

earlier than I resolve how I ought to take care of the matter.

Lastly, with regard to your suggestion that there was a ‘felony

leak’ to a newspaper I’ve no operate to research crimes

which must be reported to the correct authorities.

Yours sincerely,

James Hamilton

4. Mr Salmond to Mr Hamilton

twenty third November 2020

Pricey Mr Hamilton

Thanks to your letter of twenty ninth October. I apologise for the

delay in replying, however I had assumed that it had crossed with the

change within the Scottish Parliament, detailed beneath, of that

similar date. To that finish, I used to be awaiting a comply with up letter from

you, confirming that certainly your remit was not ‘restricted to 1

facet of the Ministerial Code’;

• Oliver Mundell (Dumfriesshire) (Con): Will the First

Minister conform to increase the ministerial code investigation

to incorporate her statements to Parliament and her actions on

the authorized recommendation concerning the judicial overview into Alex

Salmond’s alleged behaviour?

• The First Minister (Nicola Sturgeon): My view proper now

is that James Hamilton, who’s the adviser endeavor the

investigation into the ministerial code, is just not restricted in any respect

within the points that he can have a look at. If he thinks that there are

any points that have interaction the ministerial code or may in any

approach represent a breach of the ministerial code, my view is

that he’s free to have a look at them. If he considers that that

requires any change to his official remit, I’m certain that he

is completely capable of say that. Nevertheless, for the file and to

be clear, I don’t take into account his remit to be restricted to only one

facet of the ministerial code.

You should have famous that this parliamentary change appears at

odds along with your letter, which suggests that you’re restricted to

answering the ‘questions requested within the referral’. You state;

‘As you might be conscious the remit of the referral was set out by the

Deputy First Minister in a PQ response to the Scottish

Parliament made on 6 August 2020. Contemplating that the

principal matter I’m requested to think about considerations an alleged

breach of the Ministerial Code within the First Minister’s failure to

file contacts with you it appears totally logical to ask the

query whether or not the First Minister was actually concerned in any

approach within the Scottish Authorities investigation. In searching for to

reply the questions requested within the referral I’ll in fact have

to think about any related surrounding circumstances.’

As detailed in my earlier letter, I do know of no facet of the

Ministerial Code which prevents a First Minister intervening in a

course of, not least one which was discovered by the Court docket of Session

to be ‘illegal’, and as one consequence of which stated

course of is at present being examined by the SGHHC Committee

of the Scottish Parliament.

As I perceive it, not intervening to make sure Authorities is just not

performing unlawfully when there’s a hazard that this could be the

case, may very well be thought of a breach when it comes to the Ministerial

Code. Non-intervention on this matter is related to the interval

masking spring and summer season of 2018, and within the autumn, this

prolonged to agreeing with or allowing the Everlasting

Secretary to ignore exterior authorized recommendation on the

Authorities’s prospects of success within the Judicial Overview.

This was additional compounded by Parliamentary statements on

repeated events, which have been questioned by MSPs as

deceptive, most pertinently in relation to the timing of when the

First Minister first knew of the investigation and the reason

that the 2nd April assembly was held within the First Minister’s personal

dwelling as a result of she thought it was a matter of occasion enterprise.

There’s, in fact, the additional query of the felony leak of

protected info to the Every day Document newspaper on

23/twenty fourth August 2018 and what, if something, was the First

Minster’s state of consciousness of the circumstances and the

potential involvement of her workers in similar.

After I established the impartial process for referral of

purported First Ministerial breaches of the Ministerial Code, it

was an innovation and one carried by in good religion. I

appointed individuals of excellent calibre, resembling your self as

impartial advisors, in order that no-one may recommend that any

referrals had been being ‘fastened’ both by the civil service or the

Authorities.

It could be disappointing if that is now being performed by the

Deputy First Minister, by advantage of confining your phrases of

referral.

I sit up for your affirmation that your remit is just not ‘restricted

to only one facet of the Ministerial code’. On that foundation I’ll

submit the proof for which you’ve gotten requested.

Two remaining issues.

Firstly, I enclose the letter from the Crown Workplace which you

requested. As you’ll word, it threatens prosecution if I had been to

disclose to the Parliamentary Committee (and presumably to

your self) paperwork which had been disclosed in the middle of the

felony case.

Secondly, I affirm that the file of Whatapp messages

between the First Minster and myself from 5 November 2017 to

20 July 2018 equipped to the Parliamentary Committee by the

First Minister and printed on their web site is appropriate. There’s

nonetheless, one exception.

I sit up for listening to from you

Yours sincerely

Rt Hon Alex Salmond

[Redacted]

5. Mr Hamilton to Mr Salmond

Dated twenty ninth October 2020 however emailed on sixteenth November

2020

29 October 2020

Pricey Mr. Salmond,

As I set out in my letter dated 29 October, I’m within the technique of

contemplating written submissions in relation to the issues

referred to me by the First Minister as impartial adviser in

relation to the Ministerial Code and contemplating what extra

info I may have to assemble. I’ve now acquired written

submissions from all of the principal individuals whom I imagine could

have related proof aside from you.

I might hope to have the ability to take into account any written submission you

would possibly want to present as a part of that course of. It could subsequently

be useful to me if you happen to may point out whether or not you plan to

present a written submission and if that’s the case when it could be

obtainable.

Yours sincerely,

James Hamilton

6. Mr Hamilton to Mr Salmond

twenty ninth October 2020

Pricey Mr. Salmond,

Thanks to your emails of sixth October and seventeenth October

asking varied clarification questions concerning the work I’m

endeavor. I apologize for the delay in acknowledging your

first e-mail, and for the delay in offering a substantive

response. Your correspondence raised a variety of vital

questions which I wished to provide full consideration to.

Concerning the primary level, I word what you say about

representing your self. I’ll, in fact, don’t have any management over

what you set in your submissions. I can affirm that I’ll do my

finest to make sure that nothing in my report can be in breach of any

relevant courtroom orders.

In relation to your second level, thanks for drawing my

consideration to the 2 courtroom interlocutors connected to your letter. I

can have regard to those when conducting my investigation. I

would certainly respect receiving a duplicate of the letter from the

Crown Workplace which you discuss with. Once more, as I’ve simply acknowledged, I

will do my finest to make sure that nothing in my report can be in

breach of any relevant courtroom orders.

On the third level, as you’ll know, James Hynd’s function as head

of Cupboard Secretariat consists of supporting Ministers in issues

regarding the Ministerial Code. On that foundation, Mr. Hynd

supported the Deputy First Minister in establishing the referral I

have been requested to undertake.

Mr. Hynd has stepped away from the method and

has been appointed as Head of Secretariat Assist to

assist my work as I require. I can affirm subsequently that

James Hynd won’t play any function in relation to the day after day

conduct of the inquiry or within the finalisation of my report and any

suggestions that I could make.

I word your remark regarding my remit. As you might be conscious the

remit of the referral was set out by the Deputy First Minister in a

PQ response to the Scottish Parliament made on 6 August

2020. Contemplating that the principal matter I’m requested to

[Redacted]

[Redacted]

take into account considerations an alleged breach of the Ministerial Code in

the First Minister’s failure to file contacts with you it appears

totally logical to ask the query whether or not the First Minister

was actually concerned in any approach within the Scottish Authorities

investigation. In searching for to reply the questions requested within the

referral I’ll in fact have to think about any related

surrounding circumstances.

In relation to the problems raised in your second e-mail, I can

affirm that any response to my enquiries regarding the factual

issues I’m requested to investigate into can be used within the

compilation of the report. I’ve not but determined totally on the

format of the report however any reply to such enquiries can be liable

to be printed apart from materials which can’t be

made public on account of courtroom orders or for different authorized

causes.

I’ve set out varied issues related to your questions in my

current correspondence with the Parliamentary committee.

https://www.parliament.scot/HarassmentComplaintsCommittee/

James Hamilton.pdf

With regard to incidental queries it could not be my intention to

publish them as a matter of routine and it could be my

most popular choice to make no remark pending the completion

of my enquiries. Nevertheless, I’m involved to not favour or be

perceived to favour any specific occasion within the matter

and subsequently if I had been requested questions regarding contacts

between events and me I’d properly assume it correct or

essential within the public curiosity and particularly within the pursuits

of transparency to provide a full reply.

For that motive I can not exclude the likelihood that any

correspondence between us would possibly at some stage be printed.

I hope this solutions your questions.

As you already know, I’m at present within the technique of contemplating

written submissions and what extra info I may have

to assemble. It could be useful if you happen to had been capable of point out when

you’ll be capable to supply a written submission.

James Hamilton

7. Mr Salmond to Mr Hamilton

seventeenth October 2020

Mr James Hamilton

Impartial Adviser on The Scottish Ministerial Code.

seventeenth October 2020

Pricey Mr Hamilton

Additional to my letter of eighth October I await a solution to the

questions posed or an acknowledgement of the e-mail. May

you ask your workers to supply this?

I’m now in receipt of a number of press queries on whether or not I’ve

been in communication with you. My follow with the

Parliamentary Committee has been to ‘no remark’ however draw

consideration to the publication of correspondence. Nevertheless, I doubt

that it’s your intention to publish correspondence and subsequently

I would need your steerage on tips on how to reply to those questions.

On which topic I enclose a letter which my attorneys despatched to the

Parliamentary Committee on 14th October, which is clearly

related to your remit, nonetheless it’s outlined.

Yours sincerely

The Rt Hon Alex Salmond

Appendix 1

Pricey

WhatsApp Messages between Mr Salmond and First Minister

Thanks to your e-mail of thirteenth October.

These are the extra messages we referred to in our letter

of twenty seventh November which had been omitted from the First Minster’s

earlier submission. Apparently as a consequence of our

informing the Committee of this omission, the First Minister has

already learn them out on dwell Sky Information tv in an

interview with Sophy Ridge on October eleventh with out searching for

our consumer’s permission to launch his knowledge. In these

circumstances he considers that it could be perverse for him to

object to them being seen and printed by your Committee.

Nevertheless, we make the belief that you simply solely intend to

publish materials related to the Committee’s remit.

The message of fifth November 2017 is the First Minister

initiating contact over a Sky Information press inquiry whereas the

message on sixth November was the First Minister wishing to

converse additional after an strategy on the identical topic from the

[Redacted]

Everlasting Secretary. These are at the very least arguably related to

the Inquiry and he’s content material that they’re printed.

The primary two messages of ninth November concern the First

Minister’s objections to the launch of our purchasers TV Present that

day on RT (as confirmed by her on Sky Information) and are

subsequently not related to your enquiry and shouldn’t be

printed.

Nevertheless the third message of ninth November starting ‘Ps’ is

a direct reference to her earlier messages of fifth November and

must be printed.

Our consumer’s message to the First Minister of tenth November is a

continuation of our consumer’s disagreement with the First Minister

over the tv present and a reference to the then bid for the

Scotsman newspaper. As such it shouldn’t be printed.

As well as, in our letter of twenty seventh September we raised the

query of the explanations for the redaction of the title of the

one that had relayed the message from the First Minister

that she wished to satisfy our consumer for a 3rd time on this problem.

You defined that it was the First Minister had redacted this

info from our consumer’s message of thirteenth July 2018 at

11.01am.

Because it was our consumer’s message, we’re conscious of no authorized

motive for this redaction; it appears extremely related to your

deliberations and our consumer is content material to see the message

printed in full. Are you able to please make clear the explanation for redaction

with the Scottish Authorities? Our consumer is content material to supply a

copy of the unredacted message.

Nevertheless, we’ll go away the ultimate choice on publication to your

Committee. Nevertheless we might ask that this info is

shared with Committee members.

As we beforehand famous for completeness our consumer has a

file of a missed name from the First Minister to our consumer at

13.05 on the 18th July.

Our consumer hopes that that is useful.

Yours sincerely

David McKie

Associate

8. Mr Salmond to Mr Hamilton

sixth October 2020

Mr James Hamilton

Impartial Adviser on the Scottish Ministerial Code

sixth October 2020

Pricey Mr Hamilton,

Thanks to your letter of eighth September.

I do certainly have info which can be of help to your

enquiries and am joyful to help you if I can.

Nevertheless I wish to settle for your supply of clarification in your

request and ask first for solutions to the next factors;

Firstly, I’m ready to characterize myself in presenting you with

proof. I’m a personal particular person and easily can not afford to

rent additional authorized illustration as my attorneys are totally

occupied coping with the Scottish Parliamentary Inquiry. Huge

sums of public funds have already been expended by Scottish

Authorities officers in authorized illustration on this course of. I

am additionally knowledgeable that different witnesses are counting on their

political occasion to finance their authorized illustration. I’ll

characterize myself and am subsequently in no place to just accept

duty as as to if my submissions are in step with

authorized necessities as you recommend in your letter. That can

require to be your duty and I can be grateful if you happen to

may now affirm this.

Secondly, on a associated level, the remit drawn by the Deputy

First Minister refers back to the anonymity orders drawn up by the

‘courtroom within the felony proceedings’. I might draw your consideration

to the reasonably extra related ruling of Lord Woolman within the civil

proceedings of eighth October 2018. This was sought by my

counsel and as I recall the Scottish Authorities weren’t even

represented by counsel at that listening to. Additionally related could be

the interlocutor of Lord Pentland of January eighth 2019 after

concession of the Judicial Overview, the place sure Scottish

Authorities paperwork had been diminished by the Court docket because the

product of an illegal course of. For ease of reference I’ve

copied you each of those courtroom interlocutors. Please affirm that

you shall not be counting on, or accepting into proof, stated

illegal paperwork as any a part of your enquiries.

You may additionally bear in mind that my solicitors have been knowledgeable

by letter from the Crown Workplace that in the event that they current and even

describe to the Parliamentary Committee info gained in

disclosure within the felony proceedings they are going to be liable to

prosecution. I’m joyful to give you this letter if you happen to

want. Please affirm if this menace applies to your enquiry

as a result of there are certainly related paperwork underneath this

restriction. Nevertheless, on condition that a lot of this documentation was

obtained by Crown search warrant from the Scottish

Authorities it could be open for the Authorities to produce you

with it. Your issue is that you simply have no idea what it’s and I’m

at present debarred from informing you.

Thirdly, I perceive from the Parliamentary Committee

hearings in reply to a query from Ms Jackie Baillie that the

civil servant who has been allotted duty for main

assist to your enquiry is Mr James Hynd. Nevertheless Mr Hynd

was himself deeply concerned within the Scottish Authorities’s

illegal complaints process. Certainly he claimed underneath oath

at each the Fee which was required as a part of the

Judicial Overview in December 2018 and in entrance of the

Parliamentary Committee final month to be the unique creator of

the coverage. I don’t dispute Mr Hynd’s private integrity though

I word he was pressured to write down to the Committee to appropriate an

impression he had unwittingly given about me in his proof.

Nevertheless, please make clear his standing and place in your enquiry

given his prior involvement on this matter.

Fourthly, the remit given to your investigation by the Deputy

First Minister lays a stunning stress on whether or not she interfered

within the Scottish Authorities investigation. It would even be

suspected that this remit has been arrange as a straw man to

knock down. There isn’t a common bar on Ministers intervening in

a civil service technique of which I’m conscious and certainly there

are events when Ministers are literally required by the code

to intervene to appropriate civil service behaviour.

What I want to know is whether or not issues which, against this, are

specified within the Ministerial code resembling the first

duty of not deceptive Parliament (opposite to 1.3 (c) of

the code), such because the failure to behave on authorized recommendation suggesting

the Authorities was susceptible to behaving illegal (opposite to

2.30 of the code), and such because the Ministerial failure to make sure

civil servants gave truthful info to parliament (opposite to

1.3 (e) of the code) can have at the very least equal standing in your

deliberations or are you confined to the political remit which you

have been set? In case your enquiry has been confined by Ministers

then please inform me if in case you have the authority to increase that

remit unilaterally? If not, will you search the authority of these in

the Scottish Authorities who set the remit to increase it into

these, and different, areas?

Lastly because the Parliamentary Committee has demanded full

transparency and expressed an curiosity in your deliberations I

have copied them into this e-mail.

As I’m answering your enquires personally please direct all

future correspondence to me immediately

at .

Yours faithfully

The Rt Hon Alex Salmond

[Redacted]

Alex Salmond’s submission to the Harassment Complaints Committee

1

Submission Alex Salmond

Introduction

That is my fourth submission to the Parliamentary Inquiry. It must be learn along with, and along with, the three different earlier submissions. These prior submissions relate to the applying of the process (section 2), the Judicial Overview (section 3) and the Ministerial Code (section 4).

This remaining doc accordingly consists of an introduction and overview of issues

linking every of the 4 particular person submissions

It thereafter consists of submissions on

1. section 1 of the Inquiry.

2. the query of ‘conspiracy’

3. Crown Workplace

Documentary proof exists to assist the entire factual statements made on this

submission. I’ve sought to supply that to the Committee the place it’s inside my

energy to take action. Regardless of repeated requests, nonetheless, Crown Workplace has not offered

the Committee with the crucial proof which was unable to be led within the Excessive

Court docket. Maybe much more regarding is the path from Crown Workplace that I face

the prospect of felony prosecution for even referring to the existence of such

proof or specifying (even in broad phrases) what that proof is. One in all their letters

even recommended that the Committee’s use of such documentation may additionally represent

a felony offence

My hope and perception, expressed outdoors the Excessive Court docket in Edinburgh after my

acquittal, was that paperwork which weren’t put earlier than the jury and the general public would

be printed in the middle of this Inquiry. Up to now, and regardless of the centrality of these

paperwork to the remit of this Committee and the overwhelming public curiosity in

their publication, Crown Workplace proceed to veto any such publication underneath menace of

prosecution.

Regardless of that deplorable prohibition, I can affirm that the entire materials factual

statements made on this submission are supported by documentary proof. The place I

am legally allowed to direct the Committee to such paperwork, I can be joyful to do

so.

Overview

The Committee has achieved progress within the quantity of documentation equipped.

Nevertheless it has been essentially obstructed in three key areas.

First on the authorized recommendation which the Authorities acquired from exterior counsel within the

Judicial Overview. In regular circumstances the extraordinary discovery by this

Committee that each Senior and Junior Counsel to the Authorities threatened

resignation as a result of the case they had been being requested to argue was unstateable would

2

have been headline information. Nevertheless, regardless of two parliamentary votes, the complete recommendation

from Counsel hasn’t been offered to the Committee. It’s extraordinary that the

Lord Advocate, who may sanction such recommendation being printed, has refused to take action.

The authorized provision for him to publish within the public curiosity is evident. Inexplicably, the

Lord Advocate has been capable of merely refuse that request and to get away with doing

so within the face of the need of the Committee and of Parliament. Regardless of that, it seems

from what has emerged that by October 2018 exterior counsel suggested the

Authorities that, on the stability of likelihood, they had been heading for seemingly defeat.

And but, regardless of that recommendation and the price of a whole lot of hundreds of kilos of

avoidable authorized charges, the Scottish Authorities pressed on with a case they anticipated to

lose. This submission explains why.

Second the restriction arises on account of the failure of the Authorities to supply

paperwork from when the Judicial Overview began in August 2018 till the Scottish

Authorities lastly conceded in January 2019. There have been 17 conferences with exterior

Counsel, every day conferences on progress of defending the Judicial Overview (based on

Paul Cackette, performing Solicitor to the Scottish Authorities throughout the case) and thrice

weekly conferences based on Ms Judith Mackinnon, the Investigating Officer.

Nevertheless, the Committee has but to publish (or to my information see) a single

related minute, e-mail, textual content message or ‘One Be aware’ from that complete interval regarding

these conferences regardless of being assured that such paperwork could be offered. Of

specific curiosity to the Committee could be the extent to which varied events had been

knowledgeable of the progress of the case and particularly whether or not the Lord Advocate’s

expressed views on ‘sisting’ (pausing) the Judicial Overview pending the felony case

had been mentioned, how extensively and with whom.

Thirdly, the crown response to the part 23 request has hindered reasonably than assisted

the Committee. The knowledge offered was neither sought nor publishable by the

Committee. These in Crown Workplace offering that info should have been properly

conscious of that. Nevertheless, textual content messages which may very well be correctly thought of and

printed and which have been a part of the Committee’s questioning and would bear

immediately on the veracity of proof given underneath oath to this Committee have been

withheld. The blocking of the Committee on this matter and others is nothing

by any means to do with defending the anonymity of complainants, which I assist and

have upheld at each stage on this course of. Relatively, it’s a matter of the shielding of

a few of the strongest individuals within the nation who’re conscious about how

uncovered they might grow to be.

The Parliamentary Committee has already heard proof of actions by civil

servants, particular advisers, Ministers and SNP officers which taken individually may

be put all the way down to incompetence, albeit on an epic scale. Nevertheless taken collectively, and

over such a protracted interval, it turns into unattainable to elucidate such conduct as

inadvertent co-incidence. The inescapable conclusion is of a malicious and concerted

try to wreck my status and take away me from public life in Scotland. It’s an

try which might, actually, have succeeded however for the safety of the courtroom and

jury system and particularly the Court docket of Session and the Excessive Court docket of Justiciary.

Nevertheless, underlying all of this and maybe probably the most severe problem of all is the

full breakdown of the mandatory boundaries which ought to exist between

3

Authorities, political occasion and certainly the prosecution authorities in any nation

which abides by the rule of legislation.

In every of the written submissions underneath Phases 1-4 of the Inquiry remit I’ve sought

to discover these themes, and determine proof to help the Committee in doing its job

holding the Govt to account.

The success, or failure, of this Committee in doing so can have a really vital

bearing on public confidence within the capability of Parliament extra usually to reveal

failures throughout Authorities. The ramifications of a Committee unable to finish its

work on account of delay, obstruction and refusal on the a part of these underneath investigation are

each profound and chilling.

Section 1

In relation to Section 1, I’m requested for proof concerning the event of the

coverage.

I might make the next common feedback, on which I can be very joyful to

increase in oral proof.

1) Equity at Work

The Committee has heard proof on the origins of the Equity at Work Coverage 2010

(‘FaW’). As First Minister I accepted the coverage and, in distinction to another

witnesses earlier than this Inquiry, I used to be really concerned in its improvement.

Implementation of the coverage was achieved with the co-operation of the commerce unions

and I used to be happy to be the First Minister who sanctioned its adoption.

As Appendix 1 from a Administration Board assembly of 23 November 2009 makes

clear, it was not developed on account of particular complaints about Ministers on the time

however mirrored lengthy standing commerce union grievances about Ministerial Workplaces stretching

again to the times of the Scottish Workplace. FaW was the primary office coverage to incorporate

Ministers and I accepted it on the premise that it was made suitable with the statute

based mostly Ministerial Code by which the First Minister is the ultimate choice maker on the

destiny of a Minister going through a criticism. This was performed by inserting the Deputy First

Minister within the deliberative a part of the coverage. The outcome was that solely after a

suggestion had been made would the First Minister lastly resolve. This was

geared toward avoiding her or him judging twice on the identical case. The coverage was

negotiated over a interval of 18 months, was rigorously constructed, balanced and

lawful. It was properly acquired by all involved.

Within the occasion there have been no formal complaints made in opposition to any Minister underneath the

coverage and thus it was by no means invoked. Particularly and to my information the current

First Minister was by no means knowledgeable about any complaints in opposition to me as a result of there

had been none. Equally I used to be by no means knowledgeable about any complaints in opposition to her or any

different Minister underneath the phrases of this coverage as a result of there have been none.

4

Within the proof of Ms Richards (twenty fifth August 2020) she revealed that there have been

two complaints underneath FaW in opposition to present Ministers since 2017. Presumably these

can have been handled underneath the FaW provisions together with the involvement of

John Swinney as Deputy First Minister.

This Committee is charged with discovering out what went fallacious. It must also have a look at

what may be performed now to place issues proper.

Equity at Work, of which the Everlasting Secretary admitted in her proof (in

response to Ms Mitchell on 18th August 2020) to ‘not being an professional’, is in actuality a

rigorously thought of coverage which continues to be in operation for the civil service and for

serving Ministers with regard to bullying complaints. The Everlasting Secretary’s

extraordinary declare in the identical proof session that it doesn’t cowl harassment

can solely be a results of her admitted lack of familiarity with the coverage. In actuality it

covers this explicitly in paragraph 3.2.1. As lately as December 2017 FaW was

hailed by the unions in a letter to the Everlasting Secretary as an achievement ‘of

which all of us ought to rightly be proud and one thing that units up as being extra

assiduous than our counterparts down south’ ( FDA Convener)

FaW is authorized, not unlawful. It’s procedurally honest, not unfair. It was rigorously thought of,

not rushed. It achieved the central longstanding workforce ambition of getting

Ministers on the identical footing as civil service managers. Little question it may be up to date

and improved however the present place of limbo is ridiculous.

The idea of a civil service investigation into individuals over which they don’t have any

authentic jurisdiction is nonsensical and the concept of passing the outcomes to the related

political occasion for motion is self- evidently ludicrous. If authorized motion wasn’t taken

in opposition to the federal government it could inevitably comply with in opposition to any political occasion which

tried to proceed with any type of disciplinary motion on such an illegal foundation.

Equity At Work must be reinstated on the earliest alternative pending the Dunlop

overview.

2) The Growth of the 2017 Process

The Committee has already clearly established that there was no dialogue or

info introduced to both Parliament or Cupboard on the thirty first October 2017 of

extending work place insurance policies to former Ministers. Nor was there any suggestion that

this must be performed within the Head of the Civil Service’s letter of third November 2017.

And naturally it was not carried ahead in another administration within the U.Okay. and

was opposed by of the UK Cupboard Workplace after they had been briefly consulted

on the proposal later in November 2017. As she wryly requested the Scottish Authorities

at the moment, was there additionally to be such a retrospective coverage for former civil servants?

Nor was the brand new coverage signalled in any of the interior communications with workers

till February 2018.

The declare of the Authorities is that it took place independently from James Hynd

who was tasked with drafting the coverage and delivered the primary draft making use of ONLY

[Redacted] [Redacted]

5

to Former Ministers on November eighth 2017. Nevertheless the day prior to this Ms

McKinnon had circulated a ‘routemap’ of a coverage which additionally recommended making use of to

former Ministers. Mr Hynd reacted to that on eighth November saying that ‘neither of

the pathways involving Ministers look proper’.

It’s stretching credibility to imagine that this radical departure from all earlier coverage

within the Scottish (or another) administration was concurrently and independently

dreamed up by two separate civil servants. That is regardless of Mr Hynd telling the

Committee on August twenty fifth 2020 that he began with ‘a clean sheet of paper’. In a single

of the various letters to the Committee from civil servants correcting their proof, Ms

Mackinnon conceded on October 31 2020 that this stuff had been ‘occurring in

parallel’. Certainly they had been and there was a standard issue. That frequent issue is

the Everlasting Secretary Leslie Evans whose workplace was deeply concerned in directing

the work of each James Hynd on his coverage and Ms Mackinnon on her route map.

As well as we all know now that Ms Evans went to see the First Minister on November

sixth about her info that Sky Information had been about to run a narrative regarding

Edinburgh airport. I’m now within the place to know precisely what this problem was about

and the Everlasting Secretary’s fears that it was about to interrupt as a significant story had been

groundless. Nevertheless within the febrile ambiance of November 2017 a way of

proportion and due course of was briefly provide.

In actuality I had spent 30 years in public life in Scotland and for many of that point was

definitely probably the most investigated individual within the nation by the press. It’s inherently

unlikely that misconduct had remained unreported and undiscovered over such a

interval. Mr Murrell confirmed in his proof to this Committee that he had by no means

heard of any such criticism in opposition to me in my complete time in politics and the First

Minister confirmed this on BBC tv to Andrew Marr on 7

th October 2018.

Regardless, the chronology revealed by the proof tells us that the Everlasting

Secretary briefed the First Minister on 6

th November 2017 on the proposed story

involving Edinburgh Airport. Additional, the Everlasting Secretary was contacted by

Barbara Allison a couple of separate concern from a former civil servant on November eighth

2017. Having briefed the First Minister on the primary of those it could be thought of

unlikely that she didn’t transient her on the second. In that context, the notion {that a}

coverage instructed instantly afterwards which particularly, and uniquely, prolonged

to cowl allegations in opposition to former ministers is co-incidental and unrelated is hardly

sustainable.

If additional affirmation of the premise for the coverage had been wanted, the Committee has

proof of two immediately political interventions at this stage.

First, the Chief of Workers to the First Minister drafted a selected modification on 17

November 2017 which amended the commissioning letter instructing the coverage

proposing the wording ‘but additionally former Ministers, together with from earlier

administrations no matter Occasion’. This was in an e-mail to Leslie Evans’ Personal

Secretary. It’s unattainable to just accept that such a radical enlargement of the jurisdiction of

the Scottish Authorities to cowl not simply former ministers of the present

administration but additionally these of earlier administrations (lots of whom aren’t any

6

longer even in elected workplace by no means thoughts in Authorities) was not particularly inserted

to permit the criticism in opposition to me to be prosecuted.

The second political intervention was when the First Minister and the Everlasting

Secretary reached settlement, maybe at their assembly on November twenty ninth however definitely

earlier than December fifth 2017, that the coverage must be recast so that FM must be

taken out of the coverage correct and solely consulted and even knowledgeable after the method

was full. This was a elementary change within the coverage.

The timing of that is vital. When the Everlasting Secretary agreed with the First

Minister that she ought to take over as key choice maker when it comes to this new coverage

she was already conscious of the growing complaints in opposition to me. Due to this fact she put

herself on the centre of a coverage within the full information that I might seemingly be the primary

(and maybe solely given the following declaration of illegality) topic of its

implementation. Doing so from a place of already being tainted by bias is an

extraordinary choice.

Regardless of her protestations on the contrary the Everlasting Secretary was mainly

answerable for the pursuit of an illegal coverage which has price the Scottish individuals

thousands and thousands of kilos.

In her letter of twenty first June 2018 to Levy and McRae she describes the coverage as

‘established by me’. She claimed possession of it then, however not now. When requested at

the Committee she stated ‘there appears to have come into being a practice of calling it

my process. It’s not; it’s a Scottish Authorities process and one which has been

agreed by Cupboard..’ In truth, this process was by no means even seen by Cupboard or

Parliament.

It was established by Ms Evans.

In her shows earlier than the Committee, the Everlasting Secretary nonetheless appears

oblivious to the size of the catastrophe she has inflicted on all involved or the enormity

of the misjudgements she has made.

The view that she ought to have resigned on eighth January 2019, the day that Lord

Pentland’s interlocutor judged the coverage Ms Evans established and the actions taken

as ‘illegal’, ‘unfair’ and ‘tainted by obvious bias’ is extensively shared not least by

Cupboard Ministers. The injury she has performed to the status of the civil service is

very vital. For my part, any individual aware of the duty of holding

excessive workplace would have resigned way back. As a substitute Ms Evans’ contract was prolonged.

3) The function of the Investigating Officer

Because the Committee has already found the ‘prior contact’ of the Investigating

Officer with the complainants was not ‘welfare’, as was indicated to Parliament, however

was particularly contact about rising complaints, weeks earlier than the coverage underneath

which they had been to be pursued was even accepted.

The Committee has already established that complainants had been knowledgeable that Ms

McKinnon could be appointed the Investigating Officer in early December 2017,

7

lengthy earlier than complaints had been really made. The Committee has additional established

that the draft coverage was even shared with one complainant for her remark and that

Ms Mackinnon was in touch with each complainants to debate the premise on which

future complaints could be submitted underneath the coverage.

Documentation which lastly emerged on the Fee and Diligence ordered by

the Court docket of Session on the finish of December 2018 demonstrated that the Authorities

pleadings had been false when it comes to the character of this contact. This has been admitted by

the Lord Advocate in his proof to the Inquiry on 8

th September 2020. Once more, such

conduct seems to hold no sanction. These are severe issues, particularly so for a

Authorities making statements to a public courtroom.

For instance the ‘OneNote’ from Judith McKinnon dated January ninth 2018, and

revealed on account of the Fee course of, speaks to ‘altering’ the place of a

reluctant complainant, the sharing of complaints, and of it ‘being higher to get the

coverage finalised and accepted earlier than formal criticism is available in’ and of not telling

the FFM till we’re ‘prepared’. It’s this info that was utterly at odds with

the federal government pleadings within the Judicial Overview and certainly stands in stark distinction

with the oral proof introduced to the Committee.

These practices will not be simply fallacious, they’re an affront to the rules which

underpin office and human sources coverage throughout the nation. The Committee

has made reference to ACAS steerage at varied levels of the Inquiry. How such

conduct may even be contemplated by a person employed at vital public

expense and with a string of HR {qualifications} stays to be defined.

Watching the proof earlier than the Committee, it’s obvious to me that even after

having conduct declared unlawful within the Court docket of Session, these at fault within the civil

service nonetheless can not settle for the truth that they did one thing critically fallacious. In actuality

behaving unlawfully is as severe because it will get for any public servant.

The repeated declare that the terminology by some means modified for the primary to the ultimate

drafts of the process thus inflicting confusion for these implementing the coverage is

not simply irrelevant (since it’s only the ultimate model that issues) it is usually unfaithful.

In truth one of many only a few unchanged provisions within the coverage because it went by

quite a few drafts and redrafts between November eighth to the ultimate iteration on

December 20 2017 was that the Senior Officer/ Investigating Officer ought to have ‘no

prior involvement’.

Neither is it credible that the declare that the necessity for impartiality of an investigating

officer or equal was misunderstood. Quite the opposite, each James Hynd (tenth

November 2017) providing 3 names at ‘arms size’ and Judith McKinnon (seventh

November 2017) searching for to have interaction an ‘impartial occasion to research’ recognised

this at an early stage.

Whether or not that individual got here from the broader civil service or outdoors it’s secondary.

Perceived freedom from bias is an simply understood idea which is properly

established in frequent legislation and in office coverage. The appointment of Judith

McKinnon on this mild was all the time fallacious and is meaningless notably within the

8

face of the truth that she has confirmed earlier than this Committee that the character of her

prior contact with the complainants was well-known and certainly sanctioned amongst her

colleagues and line managers.

When the very fact of it was found by the Authorities’s exterior Counsel (and even

after the obligation of candour was defined to authorities attorneys by them on November

2nd after which by the courtroom on November 6

th

, each 2018) the try was nonetheless made in

pleadings to current it as ‘welfare’ contact.

The paperwork which demonstrated this to be false needed to be extracted from the

Authorities by a Fee and Diligence process underneath the authority of the

courtroom as granted by Lord Pentland. The paperwork then produced underneath that

process emerged regardless of the Authorities being keen to certify to the Court docket that

these paperwork merely didn’t exist. That conduct is outrageous for a Authorities.

On the Fee itself, Senior Counsel for the Authorities (himself innocent for

the debacle) felt compelled to apologise to the courtroom repeatedly as new batches of

paperwork emerged.

It’s extremely possible that had this documentation not been hid from the courtroom

(and from the Governments personal counsel) the falsity of the Authorities’s pleadings

would have been prevented. The truth that even after the Authorities case collapsed,

misinformation then appeared in each a press launch from the Everlasting Secretary

and the First Minister’s assertion to Parliament of eighth January 2019 speaks to an

organisation unable and unwilling to confess the reality even after a catastrophic defeat,

the phrases of which they’d conceded to the Court docket of Session.

The pursuits of the complainants

I additionally wish to make a submission concerning the claims by the Scottish Authorities to

have promoted the pursuits of the ladies who raised complaints. That’s, on the

proof earlier than the Committee, clearly false.

The Everlasting Secretary claimed to the Committee that the pursuits of the

complainants had been paramount within the Authorities considering. That is very removed from the

case.

The complainants had been introduced into the method by conduct ‘bordering on

encouragement’ because it was submitted by my Senior Counsel to Lord Pentland within the

Judicial Overview

The complainants had been assured that they might be accountable for the method and that

any police involvement could be their selection.

This assurance has been stipulated from the earliest origins of the coverage (eg Nicola

Richards’ e-mail to Everlasting Secretary of 23 November 2017) and remained in place

till the Everlasting Secretary countermanded it in her instruction to Ms Richards to

ship her choice report back to the Crown Agent in August 2018, a transfer taken in opposition to the

direct needs of the complainants.

9

They had been provided the choice of constructing ‘nameless complaints’ for which there’s

no provision within the coverage. Nevertheless, when it got here to truly defending the

anonymity of the complainants by a courtroom order within the Judicial Overview in

October 2018 the Authorities was not even represented by Counsel in courtroom. It was,

actually, me who instructed Counsel to hunt that anonymity on the a part of the ladies

involved.

The investigation was carried out in opposition to the recommendation of the police who identified that

the Scottish Authorities weren’t competent to conduct the investigation. This has

been made obtainable to the Committee within the police proof from the Chief

Constable.

The experiences to the Crown Workplace (as a substitute of the police) had been made in opposition to the specific

needs of each complainants and in direct battle with the phrases of the coverage at

paragraph 19.

The leak of the story to the Every day Document on August 23 2018 was made with no

consideration of the influence on the complainants, influence which the Everlasting

Secretary described in her proof as inflicting appreciable misery to all

involved. That, in fact, was in itself in direct contravention of the confidentiality

of the method promised to the complainants, and in addition to me.

Nevertheless, it had been the Everlasting Secretary’s personal intention, regardless of police recommendation

on the contrary, to problem a press assertion confirming the very fact of the complaints on

Thursday 23 August 2018.

This Committee’s remit is to look at the actions of these in authority. Accordingly

the conduct of the Everlasting Secretary and the civil servants and particular advisers

concerned is essential. To say, because the Scottish Authorities has performed, that the desires

and welfare of those that had made complaints had been central to the choice making is

demonstrably unfaithful.

The leak to the Every day Document

For my part, the circumstances of the leak of the main points of the complaints to the Every day

Document on twenty third/twenty fourth August 2018 must be totally examined. It’s extremely seemingly

that the leak got here from inside the Scottish Authorities and, in all chance, from

one of many Particular Advisers to the First Minister. The background information could help

The Everlasting Secretary instructed her workers to ship her Choice Report back to the

Crown Agent on or about August twenty first 2018

The Crown Agent, based on the police knowledgeable them of the Authorities’s

intention to launch a narrative of the very fact of the complaints to the press and the Chief

Constable and one other senior officer suggested in opposition to it and refused to just accept a duplicate of

the report. We all know, subsequently, that the need of the Scottish Authorities to get these

issues into the general public area is totally supported by proof.

Regardless of this police recommendation, two days later the Authorities knowledgeable my authorized staff

they supposed to launch a press release at 5pm on Thursday 23 August 2018. We suggested

10

that we might interdict the assertion pending our Judicial Overview petition and the

assertion was withdrawn. On the energy of that endeavor, we did not require to

search interdict.

We had been then knowledgeable at round 4pm that the Every day Document newspaper had phoned

the Scottish Authorities press workplace with information of the story however had no

affirmation. At 8pm, the Document phoned after which emailed at 8.16pm claiming

affirmation had now been given and broke the story at 10pm. The second story they

printed on Saturday twenty third August 2018 contained particular particulars from the complaints

and demonstrates that in addition they had entry to the Everlasting Secretary’s choice

report or an extract from it.

This leak was (based on the ICO) prima facie felony, deeply damaging to my

pursuits and people of the complainants and a direct contravention of the assurances of

confidentiality given to all. After I formally complained to the ICO, the conclusion of

the ICO reviewer assessing these information was that she was ‘sympathetic to the thesis

that the leak got here from a Authorities worker’. The one motive no additional motion

may very well be taken was as a result of the precise particular person couldn’t be recognized with out

police investigation. I intend to return to that police criticism when this Committee

has concluded its overview. I ought to say that I’m assured that I do know the id of

these concerned within the leak.

John Somers, The Principal Personal Secretary to the First Minister confirmed that her

workplace had acquired a duplicate of the Everlasting Secretary’s report in proof on 1st

December 2020. Nevertheless, that proof was then corrected to say that it had not

been acquired. Nevertheless, that’s troublesome to reconcile with the ICO overview report

(paragraph 4.8) which checklist the PPS, and subsequently The Personal Workplace as one of many

stakeholders ‘who has entry to the interior misconduct investigation report’.

It’s unlikely {that a} leak to the Every day Document got here from mainstream civil service. The

overwhelming chances are high that it got here from a Particular Adviser to the First Minister

who had entry to the report or an extract from it which was the premise of the Every day

Document story of August twenty fifth 2018.

The query of ‘conspiracy’

It has been a matter of appreciable public curiosity whether or not there was ‘a conspiracy’. I

have by no means adopted the time period however word that the Cambridge English Dictionary defines it

as ‘the exercise of secretly planning with different individuals to do one thing unhealthy or unlawful.’

I go away to others the query of what’s, or is just not, a conspiracy however am very clear in

my place that the proof helps a deliberate, extended, malicious and

concerted effort amongst a variety of people inside the Scottish Authorities and

the SNP to wreck my status, even to the extent of getting me imprisoned.

That features, for the avoidance of doubt, Peter Murrell (Chief Govt), Ian

McCann (Compliance officer) and Sue Ruddick (Chief Working Officer) of the SNP

along with Liz Lloyd, the First Minister’s Chief of Workers. There are others who, for

authorized causes, I’m not allowed to call.

11

The obvious and compelling proof of such conduct is contained inside the

materials crown workplace refuses to launch. That call is frankly disgraceful. Refusing

to permit the Committee to see that materials each denies me the chance to place the

full fact earlier than the Committee and the general public, and makes it unattainable for the

Committee to finish its process on a full sight of the related materials. The one

beneficiaries of that call to withhold proof are these concerned in conduct

designed to wreck (and certainly imprison) me.

From a really early stage within the Judicial Overview the Authorities realised that they

had been susceptible to shedding. By October they had been informed by exterior counsel that on the

stability of likelihood they might seemingly lose. That is the authorized recommendation they’ve

hidden from the Committee in defiance of two parliamentary votes.

Because the Committee has heard in proof there have been 17 conferences of the Committee

shaped to watch and plan the Scottish Authorities defence of the Judicial Overview

between August 2018 and January 2019. Paul Cackette in his proof stated that there

had been every day conferences whereas Ms Mackinnon recommended thrice every week. Regardless of this

info being provided on the proof session of 1

st December no info has

been acquired by the Committee of any of those conferences. I imagine there should be

such emails which present the Lord Advocate’s recommendation on the probabilities of sisting

(pausing) the Judicial Overview behind the felony case. The benefit of doing so in

a context the place the Judicial Overview was prone to be misplaced was clear. Any antagonistic

remark or publicity concerning the illegality of the Scottish Authorities actions would

be swept away within the publicity of my arrest and subsequent felony proceedings.

It turned frequent information in authorities, particular advisers and the SNP that the

Judicial Overview was in bother for the Authorities and the hope was that police

motion would imply that it by no means got here to courtroom, that the JR could be overtaken by the

felony investigation.

In proof Ms Allison on fifteenth September 2020 particularly denied that the Scottish

Authorities had any function in contacting potential witnesses or former civil servants

after the police investigation had began on August twenty third 2018. This isn’t true.

I enclose at appendix 2 a duplicate of an unsolicited e-mail despatched by Ms Allison herself to an

ex Scottish Authorities worker on August twenty seventh who then acquired an additional

unsolicited e-mail from Ms Ruddick of the SNP the next day (appendix 3) The

particular person involved, who offered a defence assertion, had by no means even been a

member of the SNP. I imagine her contact particulars got to Ms Allison by a

Authorities Particular Adviser.

One other Particular Adviser was in touch with the bulk of people that thereafter

turned complainants within the felony trial, shortly after the story being leaked to the

Every day Document on August twenty third 2018.

In his proof session of 8 February 2021 Mr Murrell spoke of the letter despatched by the

FM spherical all SNP members on twenty seventh August 2018. I pause briefly to notice that regardless of

the e-mail reaching 100,000 members, not one criticism about me was acquired in

response. Nevertheless, what he didn’t disclose was the e-mail spherical SNP workers and ex

workers members despatched by his Chief Working Officer from late August 2018 (enclosed as

12

appendix 3). This e-mail was despatched selectively. Some workers members had been focused and

despatched it. Others weren’t.

The recruitment of names to obtain this e-mail provoked opposition. Appendix 4

exhibits the refusal of a senior member of the SNP administrative staff at Westminster

to produce names to HQ. The workers member expressed the view that she was not

ready to participate in an apparent ‘witch-hunt’ which might be incompatible with

her skilled obligations as a lawyer. At Appendix 5 I enclose the phrases of an

affidavit of the workers member who has agreed to have it shared with the Committee.

What is evident is that even on the time of the preliminary trawl for doubtlessly supportive

people, there was profound disquiet concerning the ethics and legality of the strategy.

Along with advocating the ‘pressurising’ of the police (these textual content messages are

public and earlier than the Committee), Mr Murrell deployed his senior workers to recruit and

persuade workers and ex workers members to submit police complaints. This exercise was

being co-ordinated with particular advisers and was occurring after the police

investigation had began and after I ceased to be a member of the SNP. From the

description of the fabric launched to the Committee underneath part 23 it’s clear that

any supporting proof establishing this level was not shared with the Committee by

the crown workplace. Why?

It was clear that defeat within the Judicial Overview would have extreme penalties.

Cupboard Ministers thought it ought to result in the resignation of the Everlasting

Secretary. The Particular Adviser most related to the coverage believed that her job

was in jeopardy and accordingly sought to vary press releases in mild of that. The

First Minister’s staff felt threatened by the method as did the civil service. The

documentary proof exhibits that particular advisers had been utilizing civil servants and

working with SNP officers in a fishing expedition to recruit potential complainants.

This exercise was happening from late August 2018 to January 2019, after the police

investigation had began.

The Judicial Overview can’t be considered in isolation. The impact of it, and its seemingly

results of a defeat for the Scottish Authorities led to the necessity to escalate these issues

to the police, even when that meant doing so totally in opposition to the desires of the 2

ladies who had raised considerations. The Everlasting Secretary’s ‘we have misplaced the battle

however not the battle’ message of January eighth 2019 to Ms Allison while on vacation within the

Maldives is just not (as she tried to say) a common enchantment for equality however reasonably exhibits

her information that there have been additional proceedings to come back and her confidence that

the felony process would render such a loss within the Court docket of Session irrelevant. I

word in passing, that such language is, in any occasion, completely incompatible with the function

of knowledgeable civil servant.

The Position of the Crown Workplace

The Crown Workplace has intervened thrice to disclaim this Committee info for

which it has requested.

This has been performed by reliance on laws which was by no means designed to hinder

the work of a Parliamentary Committee performing within the public curiosity and investigating

13

the actions of the Scottish Authorities. I do know this to be true as a result of I used to be First

Minister when the laws was handed in 2010. The true goal of s. 162 of the

Prison Justice and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2010 was to stop witness statements

falling into the arms of the accused and getting used to intimidate or exert retribution

on witnesses and additional due to situations of proof ending up held or disposed

of in an insecure style. The premise of the laws was Lord Coulsfield’s Report

(2007) and the intent was to make clear the authorized necessities of disclosure and to

set up sensible preparations to stop the misuse of disclosure. Thus part 162

(and 163) had nothing by any means to do with stopping related proof being

introduced to a parliamentary Committee and its misinterpretation as such by the

Crown Workplace is a profoundly disquieting improvement which strikes on the coronary heart of

the parliamentary system of accountability.

On seventeenth September 2020 the Crown Workplace stated that our proposal to the Committee to

determine the existence of paperwork which had not been offered by the Authorities

however which had been disclosed to me within the felony case could be lined by Part

163 of the 2010 Act that ‘any one that knowingly makes use of or discloses info in

contravention of part 162 commits an offence’

Simply in case we didn’t get the message he repeated the identical level on 3 November

2020. On seventeenth December 2020 the Crown’s consultant went additional to dam

info particularly requested by the Committee ‘For you or your consumer to

accede to the request of the clerk to the Committee would require each the use and

disclosure of stated info. As such what’s proposed would quantity to a transparent

breach of part 162 which, by reference to part 163 would quantity to a felony

offence’.

He then seems to recommend that the Committee itself could be in peril of

prosecution if we had acceded to the clerk’s request.

‘Additional, any one that acquired such info from you or your consumer would

even be in breach of part 162, and consequently part 163, in the event that they use or disclose

that info. In these circumstances I don’t take into account what’s proposed is

acceptable’

This can be a letter from an unelected official citing laws handed by this Parliament

for fairly totally different causes and utilizing it to disclaim info to a Committee of elected

parliamentarians. Among the info we supposed to supply included

Authorities paperwork which ought to have been offered to the Committee within the

first place. This place is extraordinary and completely unacceptable.

Given this perspective to disclosure by the Scottish Authorities and Crown Workplace, it

turns into extremely stunning that when this Committee exerted part 23 powers to

require paperwork it was given irrelevant info for which it had not requested and

may by no means be printed whereas related info remained undisclosed. It is usually

clear that Authorities SPADS had been briefing the media on this info earlier than

members had even seen it. This isn’t the behaviour of a prosecution division

impartial of presidency affect.

14

The Lord Advocate stated in his proof on seventeenth November 2020 that he thought the

Committee has seen this correspondence. So far as I’m conscious this isn’t the case

However, I’m joyful now to supply that correspondence if the Committee so

needs. In his newest letter of eighth February the Lord Advocate pointedly fails to reply

the precise query from the Committee Convener of third February searching for

affirmation that every one Authorities information had been offered.

As was manifestly clear from his proof and his incapability to deal with probably the most primary of

questions, his denial of provision of the authorized recommendation of exterior counsel, his pricey

delay in settling the case, his refusal to verify what the Committee finally discovered

out that each Counsel threatened to resign from the case, the Lord Advocate is deeply

compromised between his twin roles as head of prosecutions and chief authorities

authorized adviser.

Nevertheless the matter goes additional but. The Everlasting Secretary has confirmed in

proof to the Committee that the referral to the crown workplace was opposite to the

specific needs of the complainants. Despite his protestations that he recused

himself from something to do with the felony investigation. I imagine that the

Committee ought to ask the Lord Advocate immediately whether or not he instructed two

unwilling complainants to make police statements.

Secondly the Committee has heard of the extremely uncommon route by way of the Crown Agent

that the Everlasting Secretary ordered her workers, in opposition to the desires of the complainants,

to current her report back to the Chief Constable. Crown Agent David Harvie’s line

supervisor at the moment was Leslie Evans, the Everlasting Secretary.

The Crown Workplace underneath present management is a division merely not match for goal.

Abstract

The process was devised when the Everlasting Secretary, as choice maker, had

information of rising complaints in opposition to me. From the outset the Everlasting

Secretary was compromised and mustn’t have taken on that function.

The process was unsound not simply in its implementation however in its genesis. It was

devised ‘at tempo’, in all probability with the aim of progressing complaints in opposition to me

and definitely with out correct care or regard to its legality or efficient session

with the unions.

The paperwork disclosed to the Committee display additional severe abuses of

course of by each the Investigating Officer and the Everlasting Secretary.

In an additional breach of the obligation of candour the Authorities owed to the Court docket, these

paperwork weren’t made obtainable at Judicial Overview.

The Investigating Officer had not simply ‘prior involvement’, however subsequently common

contact with the complainants of a nature and stage which was self-evidently

inconsistent with that of an neutral official.

15

The Everlasting Secretary who in her personal phrases ‘established’ the process met or

spoke to each complainants on a number of events (together with in mid course of) and

didn’t disclose this in both the civil or felony case.

The process was conceptually flawed and would have collapsed on precept even

if it had been correctly carried out. It’s a retrospective, hybrid coverage, which claims

jurisdiction over personal residents who might need no connection by any means with the

Scottish Authorities and exhibits full confusion between the authentic roles of

Authorities and political events.

It’s demonstrably unfair. It transgresses probably the most primary rules of pure justice in

not even permitting the individual complained about the precise to arrange their very own defence.

As well as, the Everlasting Secretary denied entry to civil servants, witness

statements and even my diaries till they had been pursued in a topic entry request.

The Authorities wasaware at a really early stage that they had been at vital danger of

defeat within the Judicial Overview, and by October 2018 had been suggested that, on the stability

of possibilities, they had been prone to lose. However they stored the clock working and

the general public ended up paying over £600,000 in consequence.

This info on seemingly defeat within the JR was communicated to key choice makers

– the Everlasting Secretary, First Minster, the Lord Advocate, the Chief of Workers- in

conferences with exterior Counsel by October and November 2018.

The pursuits of complainants had been disregarded by the Authorities in refusing

mediation initially with out session, being given no session by any means on

the opportunity of arbitration, being given false assurances on the Authorities

accepting their clear view in opposition to reporting issues to the police after which sending the

report back to the Crown Workplace in opposition to their specific needs. The Authorities did not even

instruct counsel to attend courtroom for the procedural listening to to deal with my utility

to ensure the anonymity of complainants.

The Crown Workplace has blocked key info coming to this Inquiry by wilfully

misinterpreting laws designed for different functions.

The Lord Advocate is manifestly conflicted in his roles as each Authorities authorized

adviser and prosecutor.

The recommendation of the Lord Advocate at one stage included, for instance, the choice of

sisting (pausing) the Judicial Overview to permit a felony case to overhaul the JR

proceedings. A consequence of this occurring would have been to guard the

authorities from the catastrophic injury arising from shedding the judicial overview and

a discovering of illegal conduct.

This prospect offered an incentive and crucial for the recruiting and

encouragement of police complaints from others.

This was performed by the closest advisers to the First Minister and senior SNP officers

actively involving civil servants AFTER the police investigation had began.

16

The Everlasting Secretary ordered her choice report back to be despatched to the Crown Agent,

David Harvie, in opposition to the phrases of the coverage and the desires of the complainants. At

that point I perceive that she was his line supervisor.

Towards police recommendation the Everlasting Secretary determined to press launch the very fact of

complaints on Thursday twenty first August 2018. That publication was solely prevented by

menace of authorized motion by my solicitors.

A matter of hours later, there was what the ICO assessed as a prima facie felony

leak of data together with particulars of complaints to the Every day Document, in breach of

my rights of confidentiality, and people of the complainants. Such motion was additionally

opposite to the specific assurances of confidentiality provided to all events and central

to such office points.

The Judicial Overview was solely conceded when each Counsel threatened to resign from

the case

The coverage and actions of the Everlasting Secretary and the Authorities had been accepted

as after which judged as ‘illegal’, ‘procedurally unfair’ and ‘tainted by obvious

bias’.

The true price to the Scottish individuals runs into many thousands and thousands of kilos and but no-one

on this complete course of has uttered the easy phrases that are essential on events

to resume and refresh democratic establishments – ‘I Resign’.

The Committee now has the chance to deal with that place.

Rt. Hon. Alex Salmond

seventeenth February 2021

From: Alex Salmond

Despatched: 15 February 2021 03:07

To: David McKie ; Duncan Hamilton

Topic: APPENDIX 2

From:

Date: August 27, 2018 at 7:46:13 AM GMT-5

To: REDACTED

Cc:

Topic: Private

Hey (REDACTED)

I’m not certain if you’ll keep in mind me. I used to be Director of Individuals/HR on the time you

labored with Scottish Authorities. I hope that this finds you properly.

Chances are you’ll bear in mind that there was appreciable media protection right here over the

previous few days in reference to the previous First Minister. We’re conscious that this

protection has been fairly upsetting for some individuals and we’re eager to assist in

any approach we will.

Your title and e-mail deal with has been offered by a present worker on the

Scottish Authorities, noting that you simply had been somebody who labored with Scottish

Authorities beforehand they usually had been eager to make sure that you had been provided any

assist you could require.

I might be very joyful to have a chat by cellphone or by e-mail and put you in contact with

the varied assist channels if that might be useful.

Sort regards

Barbara

BARBARA ALLISON,

Director, Communications, Ministerial Assist and Amenities

Scottish Authorities.

Tel:

Despatched from my iPad

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The knowledge on this e-mail is confidential and is for the usage of the addressee solely. Some or the entire

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by replying to this e-mail or telephoning 0141 307 2311. Levy & McRae has taken all cheap precautions to make sure that any

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Please be certain that you perform applicable virus checks earlier than opening any attachments. Until associated to the enterprise of the

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McRae. Levy & McRae is the buying and selling title of Levy & McRae Solicitors LLP, a restricted legal responsibility partnership registered in Scotland with

quantity SO305445. An inventory of members is open to inspection at our workplace. Our e-mail system is topic to random recording and

monitoring by us.

[Redacted] [Redacted] [Redacted] [Redacted] [Redacted] [Redacted]

Appendix 2

Please pay attention to cyber-crime

We won’t change checking account particulars throughout the course of a transaction. If you’re on account of switch cash to Levy & McRae and

have acquired an e-mail with the kind code and account particulars it is best to name your Levy & McRae contact to corroborate these

particulars. Please use a cellphone quantity from our web site or phrases of engagement letter and never one from the identical e-mail as accommodates

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Appendix 3

Appendix 5



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