John Banks has done us a favour and shown our justice system to be truly broken. But what chance would he have had if he had been a young man, down and out, up against the system, or even an average person or, indeed, an ordinary MP?
He or she would have had no chance.
As it was, Banks had hundreds of thousands of dollars to spend.
And spend it he had to — to clear his name.
He had a wife who, stung by Justice Edwin Wylie refusing to believe her testimony, hunted down the key witnesses who turned the case around.
The Crown didn’t do that. The fancy lawyers didn’t.
Banks was, of course, a Government Minister, a party leader and a critical vote in Parliament.
It was never an everyday case and we would expect the Crown prosecution to be at its very best and most professional.
The real problem here is that we can’t step beyond the idea of mere incompetence, and instead we are tempted to infer political motives. And if that’s the case, is it limited to the QCs involved, or were they acting on advice? Read more »