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AAIB investigation to Hawker Hunter T7 G-BXFI 22 August 2015

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AAIB investigation to Hawker Hunter T7 G-BXFI 22 August 2015

Old 7th Nov 2017, 10:33
  #921 (permalink)  
 
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My guess is there is far more here than meets the eye. No doubt the Judge is fully aware that the Sussex Police are under intense pressure from the public to bring some sort of criminal prosecution over the deaths of eleven people. Consequently he is being (possibly) over cautious in not allowing the police to gain direct access to highly sensitive information.

The various results from both of flight and engineering tests could provide significant evidence which in themselves be could be sufficient to bring a prosecution of some kind.

On balance I think the Judge did the right thing.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 11:58
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I suspect it's much more mundane - I suspect the reason why the argument ofr exclusion is classified as well as the context of the excluded documents is probably simpluy that the argument is based on the content so seeing the argumentwould disclose enough of the content as to circumvent the exclusion.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 12:32
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Statements taken by Police are nearly always obtained after the interviewee has been cautioned to the effect that anything they say can be used in a court of law. Statements and other evidence obtained as part of an air accident investigation are not necessarily taken in the same manner.

There is a strict demarkation between what is obtained for the purposes of the accident investigation and what may be used in a criminal prosecution. For the purposes of preventing further accidents, pilots and others must feel free to relate their version of events without fear of prosecution. That point is covered by international law and regulations.

This can result in circumstances where certain details of the accident are known to the general public as part of an air accident report, but that the same details cannot be used or referred to in court as part of a prosecution.

There is a legal caveat that allows for such information to be released on a case by case basis if a State believes that there is an overwhelming public interest in the information being allowed to be used by a court.

Basically, the contents of cockpit voice recorders and flight data recorders cannot be released and used to bring a prosecution against a pilot on their own. Nor can the contents of an air accident report be used to justify a prosecution because statements and other evidence were not obtained in accordance with the rules concerning the gathering of evidence in conducting a criminal case. Other evidence must be obtained to indicate some element of criminality or neglect in the way in which a flight was conducted.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 14:28
  #924 (permalink)  
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Just in case there is another pilot out there, thinking they are alone.....

I don't see any good reason for the police not to have access to anything that is known about the circumstances of such a crash.

When the AAIB, using their expertise, discover that a pilot was at fault, or indeed, was not at fault, why should that be hidden from the police officers investigating an incident?

Who is going to benefit from such a cover up?
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 14:43
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Cockpit camera - to carry or not to carry? Bit like a dashcam inasmuch as one may incriminate oneself.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 14:59
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This paragraph is at the beginning of the report on this accident.

The sentiments are enshrined in legislation

"In exercise of his powers, the Chief Inspector of Air Accidents ordered an investigation to be carried out in accordance with the Civil Aviation (Investigation of Air Accidents and Incidents) Regulations 1996 and the European Regulations EU996/2010 on the investigation and prevention of accidents and incidents in civil aviation. The sole objective of the investigation under these Regulations is the prevention of accidents and incidents and not the apportioning of blame or liability."
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 15:46
  #927 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by airpolice
Just in case there is another pilot out there, thinking they are alone.....

I don't see any good reason for the police not to have access to anything that is known about the circumstances of such a crash.

When the AAIB, using their expertise, discover that a pilot was at fault, or indeed, was not at fault, why should that be hidden from the police officers investigating an incident?

Who is going to benefit from such a cover up?
You're obviously not new here. With all of the discussion that's been had about this subject over countless PPRuNe threads, I'd suggest that nothing any of us can say would ever change your obviously pro-law enforcement view. When you approach every tragic event with the perspective that those involved must have had an ill intent, you'll never understand that in the vast majority of cases, they just didn't.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 16:09
  #928 (permalink)  
 
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AirPolice
Your title says it all!!
As Chris2303 says, Its the law.The AAIB are there to prevent accidents and further air safety.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 16:38
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Before I retired, I had decided that should I have an incident I would not talk to the AAIB, without an independent lawyer present. Although that would have been against my previous beliefs in aid of safety. The blame police do not understand the basics of an open culture. They would rather the odd one gets sentenced rather than the hundreds who pass on their mistakes to help someone else making the same mistake. Huge detriment to air safety.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 16:56
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These types of cases invariably fall into the,

"Everybody knows that...";
"Ah! But can you prove it in a court of law?"

category.

In the interest of furthering flight safety, quite frequently you can't. That is as it should be. As a previous poster has mentioned, if you are in any doubt, ensure that you have a legal representative present at any interview or discussion.

Many years ago and not in any matter relating to aviation, I embarked on what I considered to be a casual case discussion with a solicitor, only to be presented some weeks later with a verbatim transcript of the conversation and directions to certify the transcript was correct. Needless to say, there were certain comments and opinions expressed which would never have seen the light of day if I had known beforehand that a transcript would be made and produced in court. As it happens, it all worked very much to my advantage in the end.

Never take anything for granted when it comes to the law and always remember that common sense doesn't come into it.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 18:06
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Originally Posted by airpolice
Just in case there is another pilot out there, thinking they are alone.....

I don't see any good reason for the police not to have access to anything that is known about the circumstances of such a crash.

When the AAIB, using their expertise, discover that a pilot was at fault, or indeed, was not at fault, why should that be hidden from the police officers investigating an incident?

Who is going to benefit from such a cover up?
AAIB investigations are about finding probable causes and learning lessons, not establishing blame or fault. By refusing access to certain reports the judge is probably protecting all parties from the type of scenario discussed here, where a prosecution relied on opinions from an AAIB report:

http://www.pprune.org/private-flying...h-crash-5.html

The law is clear: material gathered by the AAIB is for the benefit of their investigation and not for a criminal prosecution. It's down to Sussex Police to approach some/all of the same people as expert witnesses and then decide if there is enough evidence (rather than opinions) to support a prosecution case.

I recommend the recent film "Sully", which has similar themes.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 18:28
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It might be worth pointing out here that the AAIB actually have more powers than the police to interview witnesses. I would have thought that the British justice system could only allow that as long as the evidence cannot be used in a criminal trial. For that reason the witnesses are not named.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 18:38
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Originally Posted by airpolice
Just in case there is another pilot out there, thinking they are alone.....

I don't see any good reason for the police not to have access to anything that is known about the circumstances of such a crash.

When the AAIB, using their expertise, discover that a pilot was at fault, or indeed, was not at fault, why should that be hidden from the police officers investigating an incident?

Who is going to benefit from such a cover up?
Oh dear.

The penalty for not talking to the AAIB is just a small fine. So if there is ANY chance that some pumped-up plod wants to make a case out of nothing (or very little), then EVERY pilot involved in a serious incident or accident will just say nothing to the AAIB (and pay the fine), to ensure the police don't start making a big deal getting all Daily Mail "someone has to PAY" - especially when they don't have the first idea about aviation and just culture.

And that is why BALPA forced this legal action - to protect flight safety.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 18:50
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PPP I take your point 100% but do please put yourself in the position of the Chief Constable of Sussex who has the task of ascertaining how come 11 people died at an Air Display at Shoreham. Further more he has to bring to justice the perpetrator if he decides there is one.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 19:44
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GOULI

"Never take anything for granted when it comes to the law and always remember that common sense doesn't come into it."

So very true.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 19:52
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Originally Posted by HundredPercentPlease
Oh dear.
And that is why BALPA forced this legal action - to protect flight safety.
Looking at the case decision linked above I don't see that BALPA "forced" anything:
- The Chief Constable applied to the Crown Court for a disclosure order against the Secretary of State (i.e. the AAIB) to produce information they hold about the accident under PACE.
- This was withdrawn when it was pointed out that the various regulations require that such disclosure can only be ordered by the High Court.
- When the Chief Constable applied to the High Court BALPA joined the Secretary of State as the second defendant since they had an obvious interest in the case.

If anyone was doing any forcing here it was the Chief Constable?? - this is not to diminish BALPA's important role in this case.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 20:33
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Originally Posted by dastocks

If anyone was doing any forcing here it was the Chief Constable.
As I suggested earlier in post #927, probably without an expectation of being successful.

It is of note that the most senior Judge in the Country, namely the Lord Chief Justice, was one of the two Judges making the decision.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 21:33
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Originally Posted by DODGYOLDFART
PPP I take your point 100% but do please put yourself in the position of the Chief Constable of Sussex who has the task of ascertaining how come 11 people died at an Air Display at Shoreham. Further more he has to bring to justice the perpetrator if he decides there is one.

When I first joined the Police, many decades ago now, part of our training then, was precisely what to do at the scene of an air disaster. It was made clear to us that we were there for many functions, but to assist, as far they required it, the AAIB. In fact the investigation was entirely theirs ending with their findings being the basis for the inquest.We would have been given very short shrift if we had tried to usurp their role.

The presumption being that such crashes were accidents. Nowadays the senior officers are spineless glory hunters building false promises that they will ensure someone will rot in jail etc etc...Yes indeed very Daily Mail
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 21:53
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There must not be a prosecution for prosecutionís sake. One hopes the CPS will put the Chief Constable in his place if it gets that far.
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Old 7th Nov 2017, 22:27
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A prosecution will only proceed if the CPS considers that there would be a realistic chance of conviction on any charges that may be laid, and that a prosecution would be in the public interest.

That's no different from the tests applied to any criminal prosecution.
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