My first contact with the Office of the Lord Chief Justice was on 11th February 2011 after the adjourned Coroner’s Court but before I knew that Coroner Leckey had closed the case and that he had used the Police to attempt to persuade the pathologist Mr Ingram to change his findings in the post-mortem Report. The details of that submission was covered in my post dated 22nd October 2018. For ease I will reproduce the reply I received from the Complaints officer Martin McMullan to that request.
As a result of subsequently finding out about Leckey’s very questionable behaviour after the adjournment, the new Police investigation and the Ombudsman’s inquiry and subsequent apology. I decided that I would resubmit my request but include Leckey’s actions not included in my first submission ie closure of the case and approach to the pathologist through the Police.
I submitted an updated formal complaint to the Lord Chief Justice on 30th November 2015. I said that the evidence showed that Leckey had failed totally in his duty as a Corner and that he clearly believed that his primary duty was to protect incompetent or dishonest professional witnesses to the detriment of Justice.
My submission wasn’t acknowledged and after several weeks of waiting I decided to phone the Complaints Office to find out when I might expect a response.
I can not be certain to whom I spoke but he told me that since Mr Leckey had retired approximately over one year previously he had no duty to investigate my complaint. He assured me that I had no further avenue of complaint and that he was responsible for serving judicial officers only. My only appeal would be the Queen. I told him that it was most unlikely that I would pursue that course. I also told him that it was a strange state of affairs that a judicial officer such as Leckey could avoid any investigation simply by resigning and thus allowing the Lord Chief Justice to wash his hands of a complaint.
He was wrong in at least one detail. Leckey had not resigned over one year earlier. He had resigned just one month earlier on 30th October 2015 and my letter was dated 30th November 2005. I wondered if Leckey had been given gardening leave or had holiday days added on to that date or was he paid a salary beyond the date of my letter. I will probably never know.
He was also wrong in another respect but that will hopefully be dealt with in one of the next posts.
I was strangely reminded of aspects of the notorious Judge Curran case many years previously.
The Coroners Liaison Officer also wrote to me, confirmed Leckey’s retirement date, and told me that the he had been informed by the Office of the Lord Chief Justice that “he had no authority to investigate complaints against members of the judiciary who have retired and no longer hold a protected judicial office.
This special protection granted to judicial officers reminded me of the parallel protection and special status given to certain privileged politicians, senior police officers and influential terrorists who have been granted the protective cloak of an iniquitous super injunction. I presume this special protection for Leckey came from the same disregard for justice and freedon of speech just as the On-the-Run letters given to terrorists and super injunctions given to others. In other words people with clout are given protection from the Justice System at a cost to the innocent who have none.
It was clear to me that I would find no Justice at the Office of the Lord Chief Justice. It was just another branch primarily concerned with the protection of those with influence and power.
I decided that since the Lord Chief Justice could do nothing my last chance was to submit a possible case against Leckey of Perverting the Course of Justice, interfering with witnesses and evidence, and misconduct in a public office.
I submitted evidence for consideration by the Public Prosecution Service.
I had sent detailed evidence to the PPS who had previously agreed that I had the right to do so as a private citizen. I didn’t expect a positive reply and I was not disappointed as I am still waiting for a decision to be made.
So far as I know my evidence against Leckey is still an active and current case file with the PPS as are similar files containing my evidence against Orde, Carson and McBride.
Given that Leckey was probably expecting some sort of honour for his long service to the Coroner’s Office, I thought that the Honours Secretariat for Northern Ireland should be made aware of my submission to the PPS and to hold back on any planned award until the outcome of the PPS decision was finalised. I did not hear back from anyone in the Secretariat.
My next post will deal with the other error made by the Lord Chief Justice’s Office.