Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

The Secret Special Branch Ledgers

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Originally posted by Chris View Post
    I think they are making up the rules as they go along in this case. The Information Commissioner does recommend not destroying any information that has been the subject of a request until six months after the last correspondence, to make sure there's been time to exhaust all the appeal procedures. But otherwise public bodies are meant to have proper schedules for disposing of records, which are not meant to be influenced by Freedom of Information requests. I don't believe for a moment that these documents had been scheduled for routine destruction, independent of the FOI requests.

    Also, the decision about preservation is meant to be made by a responsible officer of the public body, under the guidance of the National Archives. TNA has published its own preservation criteria, which include:
    "records relating to individuals or national and international events of significant contemporary interest or controversy"
    http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/d...olicy-2012.pdf

    I don't think there's any doubt that the Register met that criterion. So I think the justification for destroying these records is extremely dubious. It would be interesting to know what discussions were held between the police and TNA, and what advice TNA really gave. Perhaps that would be a suitable subject for a Freedom of Information request to TNA.
    FOLLOW UP POST

    I have just sent in two requests to both The TNA and the police I wonder if they will both be singing from the same song sheet?

    www.trevormarriott.co.uk

    Comment


    • [QUOTE=Chris;333014] I think they are making up the rules as they go along in this case. The Information Commissioner does recommend not destroying any information that has been the subject of a request until six months after the last correspondence, to make sure there's been time to exhaust all the appeal procedures. But otherwise public bodies are meant to have proper schedules for disposing of records, which are not meant to be influenced by Freedom of Information requests. I don't believe for a moment that these documents had been scheduled for routine destruction, independent of the FOI requests. [QUOTE]

      In the US a large quantity of Kennedy Assassination related documents went missing. It's unknown if they were destroyed.

      Many others are being held back for 75 years - basically until all people alive at time of assassination are deceased - and quite likely their offspring too.

      I've seen other Kennedy documents that have finally been been released under the Freedom of Information Act where 95% of the entire document has been "redacted for National Seurity reasons" = blacked out with opaque black marking pen, including name of agency/person(s) who wrote it, name of recipient(s), initials of those who read it, and subject matter.

      Sometimes only a few words random words are visible like "and" and "the"... like tiny islands floating in a sea of black marking pen. Researchers have fought for over 51 years to get these documents, and they are finally released in a completely obliterated state devoid of any information!

      It would be interesting to ask your National Archives:

      a.) If they really were offered the Special Branch documents as claimed

      b.) If so, what were the reasons for deciding they weren't worthy of preservation even as digital images that take up very little physical space, and

      c.) Who made that decision?

      Best regards,
      Archaic
      Last edited by Archaic; 03-10-2015, 01:24 PM.

      Comment


      • Other good questions might be:

        If these documents were irrelevant to any policing purpose why were they retained for as long as 120 years?

        What was the policing purpose which justified their retention for 120 years but which then suddenly ceased to pertain after that length of time?

        Having been retained for such an inordinate length of time, why was there a need for them to be so hastily destroyed shortly after somebody had asked to look at them?
        "It is a capital mistake to theorise before one has data. Insensibly one begins twisting facts to suit theories instead of theories to suit facts." Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (as Sherlock Holmes).

        Comment


        • Trevor obviously framed the request wrong - he should have said "Dear Sir, I most definitely do NOT want to see...."

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Bridewell View Post
            Other good questions might be:

            If these documents were irrelevant to any policing purpose why were they retained for as long as 120 years?

            What was the policing purpose which justified their retention for 120 years but which then suddenly ceased to pertain after that length of time?

            Having been retained for such an inordinate length of time, why was there a need for them to be so hastily destroyed shortly after somebody had asked to look at them?
            Hello Colin,

            Could it be that before all the fuss started. .They simply didn't realise what they had?


            Phil
            Chelsea FC. TRUE BLUE. 💙


            Justice for the 96 = achieved
            Accountability? ....

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Phil Carter View Post
              Hello Colin,

              Could it be that before all the fuss started. .They simply didn't realise what they had?


              Phil
              Yes that about the top and bottom of it

              Comment


              • [QUOTE=Archaic;333365][QUOTE=Chris;333014] I think they are making up the rules as they go along in this case. The Information Commissioner does recommend not destroying any information that has been the subject of a request until six months after the last correspondence, to make sure there's been time to exhaust all the appeal procedures. But otherwise public bodies are meant to have proper schedules for disposing of records, which are not meant to be influenced by Freedom of Information requests. I don't believe for a moment that these documents had been scheduled for routine destruction, independent of the FOI requests.

                In the US a large quantity of Kennedy Assassination related documents went missing. It's unknown if they were destroyed.

                Many others are being held back for 75 years - basically until all people alive at time of assassination are deceased - and quite likely their offspring too.

                I've seen other Kennedy documents that have finally been been released under the Freedom of Information Act where 95% of the entire document has been "redacted for National Seurity reasons" = blacked out with opaque black marking pen, including name of agency/person(s) who wrote it, name of recipient(s), initials of those who read it, and subject matter.

                Sometimes only a few words random words are visible like "and" and "the"... like tiny islands floating in a sea of black marking pen. Researchers have fought for over 51 years to get these documents, and they are finally released in a completely obliterated state devoid of any information!

                It would be interesting to ask your National Archives:

                a.) If they really were offered the Special Branch documents as claimed

                b.) If so, what were the reasons for deciding they weren't worthy of preservation even as digital images that take up very little physical space, and

                c.) Who made that decision?

                Best regards,
                Archaic
                I suspect that the destruction of police and official records and documents could be traced as far back to Sumer or the first dynasty of Egyptian pharaohs. There is always an official slant on public presentation of government achievement and work, and an unofficial one (usually called "rumor" or unverifiable). A clear case of this that is going to be debated within two months: the 100th anniversary of the Lusitania torpedoing, and the issue of whether the ship sank in 18 minutes because of a second internal explosion due to vast quantities of illegally hidden ammunition being transported to Europe for the war. I don't propose discussing this - it just illustrates the sense of official discussion (ship sunk by torpedo) with the questions of the bigger picture. The same can be said of the assassinations of JFK and his brother Robert, and Martin Luther King, and Malcolm X. There are hundred of such cases. The U.N. just announced they are reexamining the death of Dag Hammersjold in 1961. It only took them fifty four years to get the courage to do so.

                Two years back I read a rather good study on the Snyder-Gray murder case of 1927, which happened in my native Queens. Considering the notoriety of that murder (the one where Ruth Snyder was photographed as she was being electrocuted at Sing Sing in 1928) it turned out many important items were just jettisoned in the 1940s to make room for more recent case files. The thrown out material included detective notes on the interrogations of Snyder and Gray. The author was able to find newspaper reports of these, and put together a reasonable account of what happened, but the original notes would have been really of more use.

                That if these books that were destroyed by the British authorities did include the names of aristocrats dead since roughly 1940 (given the books dealt with the year of the Cleveland Street Scandal in 1889) by now nobody would have cared anymore. The central problem for the people involved in that scandal was the Labouchere Amendment regarding making homosexual sex a crime, and as that no longer is a crime (and the parties involved are dead) there was no reason to worry about scandalous revelations. But some genius got it into his or her head to prevent prurient interest in the future by destroying these documents. One really would like to trace the action back to the individual who decided this, and have him or her not only lose his or her position but any government pension and honors he or she would be entitled to or have at this time. Such actions would be the only way to force similar actions from occurring in the future.

                Jeff

                Comment


                • Hello Jeff,

                  I read with interest your comments on tracing the guilty individual responsible for rubber stamping this decision

                  I do not disagree with you..but fear that in the world of the Met Police and their doings, this action will be regarded as quite insignificant. I honestly doubt they thought twice about it. And would have done only if they actually knew the contents contained any names that could be embarrassed by being seen
                  The Lord's of yesteryear have prominent families still. We have seen that on a much more serious scale the lengths that The Met Police have been willing to go to protect names of those in high, prominent or powerful position.

                  Sadly, the open window of plain sight is all too often closed shut to the outside world and, as I personally suspect in this case, there remains within the hierarchy of the Metropolitan Police Force an old fashioned view towards revelation of their work..no.matter it's age.

                  I would like to know one thing. How one would go about finding out the name of the alleged individual responsible for this action. Because as sure as eggs are eggs, and going on past form, that name will not be revealed. They will put all.manor of obstacles in the way to protect one of their own.

                  Unless ordered to by someone within the Home Office or an independent tribunal. And I fear that this case is yet another that will be deemed not important enough for such action. Sadly.

                  Gotten by the short and curlies.



                  Phil
                  Chelsea FC. TRUE BLUE. 💙


                  Justice for the 96 = achieved
                  Accountability? ....

                  Comment


                  • Hi Phil,

                    Thanks for your comments. I have to admit that my spleen (to use an old fashioned, but good word for anger) is roused when I hear of such pointless destruction. You are probably correct that all sorts of road-blocks would be put up by the bureaucracy in Britain to protect one of their own. Having been a New York State bureaucrat for 3 decades before retiring, I can think of some boneheads that flourished for awhile and were never punished for really stupid blunders (not necessarily like this) without the public being aware of it. It's universal. If you can recall the series "Yes Minister" Nigel Hawthorne's "Sir Humphrey Appleby" keeps pointing out that the only way bureaucracy can show success is to increase it's own red tape and size. It's actually the reverse of the idea of modern business to consolidate and supposedly make public use of the businesses easier and faster.

                    I'm also reminded of a quote from G.K. Chesterton (a writer I can't totally like due to his bigotry, but who fascinates me none-the-less) that the problem with England is that (unlike the United States - he said this about 1912 at the time of the so-called "Marconi Scandal") the English government tends to hide errors, while the United States tends to expose them. This is not totally true - we've hidden things on many occasions, or outwardly lied about them. But it seemed to Chesterton that the U.S. had more openness investigating errors and scandals than the English did.

                    Jeff

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Phil Carter View Post
                      I would like to know one thing. How one would go about finding out the name of the alleged individual responsible for this action. Because as sure as eggs are eggs, and going on past form, that name will not be revealed. They will put all.manor of obstacles in the way to protect one of their own.
                      I think you'd stand no chance at all of finding out the names of individuals because of the exemption in the Freedom of Information Act relating to personal data:
                      http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000/36/section/40

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Phil Carter View Post
                        Hello Jeff,

                        I read with interest your comments on tracing the guilty individual responsible for rubber stamping this decision

                        I do not disagree with you..but fear that in the world of the Met Police and their doings, this action will be regarded as quite insignificant. I honestly doubt they thought twice about it. And would have done only if they actually knew the contents contained any names that could be embarrassed by being seen
                        The Lord's of yesteryear have prominent families still. We have seen that on a much more serious scale the lengths that The Met Police have been willing to go to protect names of those in high, prominent or powerful position.

                        Sadly, the open window of plain sight is all too often closed shut to the outside world and, as I personally suspect in this case, there remains within the hierarchy of the Metropolitan Police Force an old fashioned view towards revelation of their work..no.matter it's age.

                        I would like to know one thing. How one would go about finding out the name of the alleged individual responsible for this action. Because as sure as eggs are eggs, and going on past form, that name will not be revealed. They will put all.manor of obstacles in the way to protect one of their own.

                        Unless ordered to by someone within the Home Office or an independent tribunal. And I fear that this case is yet another that will be deemed not important enough for such action. Sadly.

                        Gotten by the short and curlies.



                        Phil
                        I have put in FOI requests to both police and national Archives to obtain those answers.

                        www.trevormarriott.co.uk

                        Comment


                        • Jacques Brel is alive and well?

                          Originally posted by claire View Post
                          Good luck, Trevor...when did Clutterbuck die? Very recently, it must be--I was under the impression he was working for Rand now
                          I am confused too.

                          http://www.rand.org/about/people/c/c...k_lindsay.html
                          http://www.rand.org/pubs/technical_reports/TR785.html

                          second link is a report (unrelated) he published in 2012.
                          Is it progress when a cannibal uses a fork?
                          - Stanislaw Jerzy Lee

                          Comment


                          • Some of these artefacts may not have been destroyed for reasons of skulduggery. The police generate huge quantities of paperwork (as I'm sure Trevor can confirm!). Custody records, for example, are routinely destroyed after about 6 years as are pocket note-books. Such material accumulates over time until storage space becomes critical and a decision has to be made as to what should be kept and why. Inevitably more recent material is prioritised for retention, sometimes with unfortunate consequences for subsequent researchers.

                            I still think the timing of the destruction of the material requested by Trevor is highly suspect, given that it had previously been stored for so long, but was there ever anything of real interest to begin with? Guess we'll never know now and that is the frustrating aspect.
                            Last edited by Bridewell; 03-24-2015, 09:48 AM.
                            "It is a capital mistake to theorise before one has data. Insensibly one begins twisting facts to suit theories instead of theories to suit facts." Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (as Sherlock Holmes).

                            Comment


                            • Please forgive my ignorance here, but are we saying that although the Metropolitan Police official reports on the whitechapel murders have long since been plundered and or lost. Within the Special Branch on a dusty shelf, there are their records which have survived unmolested but we can't see them because there still classified as secret?

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by The Station Cat View Post
                                Please forgive my ignorance here, but are we saying that although the Metropolitan Police official reports on the whitechapel murders have long since been plundered and or lost. Within the Special Branch on a dusty shelf, there are their records which have survived unmolested but we can't see them because there still classified as secret?


                                a quick search on Google appears to have answered my own question..............

                                http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/ukne...es-secret.html


                                How fascinating!!!!

                                Comment

                                Working...
                                X