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  • Originally posted by NickB View Post
    I believe Sherrard and Kleinman were very competent but, even if they weren't, Hanratty maintained Kleinman and said he wanted Sherrard to conduct the case. I suspect the reason for this is that Hanratty thought that Sherrard and Kleinman believed in him (and I think they did until the Rhyl alibi) and that other solicitors/barristers might not be so gullible.

    I don't see how complete disclosure could have saved him, and doubt that the level of nondisclosure was abnormal for that time, and he didn't murder a 'local'.

    After the execution he had the luck of people like Foot/Woffinden presenting his case in a highly biased way. The Court of Appeal said that even without the DNA it would have upheld the guilty verdict.
    Hi again Nick - thanks for your response.

    Why do you say that Kleinmann was ''very competent''? It's a genuine question. I particularly feel he let his man down badly on the identification parade.

    Sherrard was undoubtedly hardworking and dignified but I'll hand over on this aspect to my cyber pal Graham and let him regale us about the Brighton Trunk Murder or something equally grisly from the past where a murderer got off due to a canny brief.

    Complete disclosure may not have saved Hanratty but should he have been denied it going in the mix to the jury? I don't have time to check now but I'm pretty certain the Court of Appeal in 2002 referred to such disclosure as being required ''even by the standards of the day'' or something very similar.

    I take your point about the blinkered approach of campaigners like Foot and Woffinden. With regard to your last sentence, the Court of Appeal were very astute in ensuring that their judgement could not be challenged.

    Best regards,

    OneRound

    Comment


    • “His industry in this case knew no bounds” said Sherrard of Kleinman (Woff, page 235). He seems to have been very diligent throughout, and indeed sometimes overstepped the boundary of what was legally permitted in his client’s interests. On the id parade the claim that anyone would have picked Hanratty because of his hair colour is demonstrably untrue; Hirons and Blackhall picked other people.

      I don’t think Hanratty took the advice of his brief as diligently as Toni Mancini. I have always thought that the line about being ‘a thief not a murderer’ was tutored by Sherrard, because it is a recurring theme and was very well expressed. But sometimes he went off script and showed his callous side. The excerpt below (if you can read it) demonstrates this where he was tempted by Swanwick to deviate from the “thief not murderer” answer that he gave first.

      To me the big question is whether they should have pursued with the Rhyl witnesses in the appeal. But we do not know what their client had told them so it is difficult to judge.
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      • From the relatively little I've read about Norman Birkett, it appears that his courtroom manner and that of Sherrard's were very similar, i.e., courteous, patient, quiet.

        The major difference between the Mancini and Hanratty cases is that in the former the experts could never agree just what the precise cause of the death of the victim (Mancini's girlfriend) actually was. Some said a blow to the head with a weapon, others trauma caused by a fall; one pathologist gave the cause of death as a morphine overdose. Birkett grabbed these differences of opinion and built his entire defence-case around them, leading the jury to accept his argument that the woman died as a result of either falling downstairs or falling and hitting her head on the grate, and not as the result of a deliberate blow to the head. Birkett also coached Mancini how to perform in the witness box - he was plainly a keen pupil as his life was at stake. Not until 40 years later did he confess that he had actually killed his girlfriend.

        The cause of Gregsten's death was only too plain.

        I still think that Sherrard made an error of judgement in allowing Hanratty to change his alibi mid-trial. But he did, and his client took the consequences.

        Graham
        Last edited by Graham; 04-27-2018, 02:11 AM.
        We are suffering from a plethora of surmise, conjecture and hypothesis. - Sherlock Holmes, The Adventure Of Silver Blaze

        Comment


        • A modified exhaust?

          Trower when interviewed by the Sunday Times in Dec 1966 said amongst other things: "I saw this grey Minor tearing down the road. I noticed it because it had such a loud exhaust – a modified rally job – without that it wouldn’t have struck me."

          As far as I can tell, Trower previously only talked about a grinding of gears drawing his attention to the car. Was he now embellishing his story, or did the Morris in fact have a "modified rally job" for an exhaust?

          Comment


          • Hanratty's Hankie

            Came across this article from May 1971, from which it can be inferred that Mrs France was in a position to identify Jim's hankie but at Dixie's urging she did not do so.
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            • Kleinmann v Hanrattys

              The debate continued in the letters pages of the ST in October 1968, which is how people debated before the advent of the internet.
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              • Thanks for those, Spitfire.

                The most interesting bit for me was the Sunday Times journo Jacobson saying: "The family is adamant that Mr France killed himself because of his horror and remorse at having introduced a sex murderer into his home where he became a friend of the family and its three daughters. Our reading of Mr France’s last letters certainly confirms this view. What emerges with awful clarity is that he was driven to suicide by the thought, as one letter puts it, ‘of what I have done to you and the children.’ No other motive emerges from the letters, and nothing in them indicates that Mr France may have killed himself because he helped frame Hanratty." [My italics]

                The fact that Woffinden deliberately omitted this part of the article in order to continue pushing his conspiracy theory lowers him even further in my estimation. His book is the work of a dishonest, despicable hack, imo.
                Last edited by Alfie; 04-27-2018, 09:53 AM.

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                • The parents’ point that Hanratty was not precise about it being 7.30 when he left Liverpool ignores the difference (alluded to by Kleinman) between his description that it was dark upon his arrival in Rhyl and the witnesses descriptions based upon it still being light. And as has been mentioned, the 7.30 departure is consistent with all the things he claimed to have done in Liverpool, and you cannot accommodate these by pushing back his arrival in Liverpool earlier without producing other problems.

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                  • Alfie,

                    I cannot put the same weight on Dixie France’s letters as you do. There is always the tendency to assume that a suicide note, rather like a deathbed confession, will be the unvarnished truth.

                    However, a man bent upon suicide is quite likely to want to leave behind as positive a view of himself as possible, maybe just to spare his family more uncomfortable truths. He can do so in the certain knowledge that he will never have to answer for what he has written.

                    If a member of Dixie France’s family had been killed by his decision to take Hanratty into the family home then I could see the suicide motive there. (I don’t think his daughter’s romantic life qualifies in the same regard.) As it stands, France had nothing to reproach himself with any more than many others in the criminal fraternity who were on close terms with Hanratty. Or even Hanratty’s girlfriends for that matter. Why did they not feel ‘shamed?’

                    France’s suicide is surely due to some closer connection to or knowledge of the crime. The timing of the suicide clearly shows that France did not expect any ‘closure’ from Hanratty’s execution.

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by cobalt View Post
                      Alfie,

                      I cannot put the same weight on Dixie France’s letters as you do. There is always the tendency to assume that a suicide note, rather like a deathbed confession, will be the unvarnished truth.

                      However, a man bent upon suicide is quite likely to want to leave behind as positive a view of himself as possible, maybe just to spare his family more uncomfortable truths. He can do so in the certain knowledge that he will never have to answer for what he has written.

                      If a member of Dixie France’s family had been killed by his decision to take Hanratty into the family home then I could see the suicide motive there. (I don’t think his daughter’s romantic life qualifies in the same regard.) As it stands, France had nothing to reproach himself with any more than many others in the criminal fraternity who were on close terms with Hanratty. Or even Hanratty’s girlfriends for that matter. Why did they not feel ‘shamed?’

                      France’s suicide is surely due to some closer connection to or knowledge of the crime. The timing of the suicide clearly shows that France did not expect any ‘closure’ from Hanratty’s execution.
                      Cobalt - You and other conspiracy theorists can believe Dixie was involved in the murder if you like. It's a free country after all (well, semi-free at any rate, as Alfie Evans' parents have just found out).

                      What I'm objecting to is a "journalist" who omits inconvenient facts and thereby distorts the truth in order to push his particular version of that theory.

                      Comment


                      • Double post - apologies.
                        Last edited by OneRound; 04-28-2018, 01:24 AM.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by NickB View Post
                          “His industry in this case knew no bounds” said Sherrard of Kleinman (Woff, page 235). He seems to have been very diligent throughout, and indeed sometimes overstepped the boundary of what was legally permitted in his client’s interests. On the id parade the claim that anyone would have picked Hanratty because of his hair colour is demonstrably untrue; Hirons and Blackhall picked other people.

                          I don’t think Hanratty took the advice of his brief as diligently as Toni Mancini. I have always thought that the line about being ‘a thief not a murderer’ was tutored by Sherrard, because it is a recurring theme and was very well expressed. But sometimes he went off script and showed his callous side. The excerpt below (if you can read it) demonstrates this where he was tempted by Swanwick to deviate from the “thief not murderer” answer that he gave first.

                          To me the big question is whether they should have pursued with the Rhyl witnesses in the appeal. But we do not know what their client had told them so it is difficult to judge.
                          Hi Nick - there's (obviously) no dispute that other people were picked out on the id parade. Nonetheless, Hanratty was still put at a disadvantage by his hair colouring (orange, bunch of bananas, etc) and Kleinman should have objected.

                          Even more so when those on the parade were asked to speak.

                          The complete lack of any objection from Kleinman at the time was used at trial and appeal to counter arguments of unfairness on the parade. In other words, a significant factor in the parade being adjudged fair was down to Hanratty's solicitor not having said it was unfair. Surely an own goal by Kleinman!

                          Very interesting press excerpts supplied by Spitfire and yourself including, inter alia, the reproduced letter from Kleinman to the Sunday Times for which thanks.

                          The Court of Appeal went further than I would have done in how they viewed Kleinman's letter and to what they gave weight. In particular, Kleinman wrote that the statements from those in Rhyl did not accord ''in other respects'' with what Hanratty had claimed. The Court in their judgement (para 200) appeared to accept this at face value and regard the lack of detail as due to the solicitor being unable to disclose ''privileged information''. However, this overlooks - as mentioned a couple of paragraphs earlier in their judgement - that Kleinman was not necessarily giving an objective overview of matters but a personal defence of his own conduct in the case following the ''highly critical'' article in the Sunday Times. By this stage, it might have been considered that Kleinman's concern was more to do with his own reputation than the interests of his deceased client.

                          Finally, Kleinman emphasises in his letter as to how materials not used at trial were supplied to the Home Secretary to try and gain a reprieve. This cuts as little ice with me as it did with Rab Butler at the time. Butler was considering whether to grant clemency to someone who had been found guilty of one of the most horrific murders of the twentieth century and who had had his appeal dismissed. If the legal process had determined Hanratty guilty as it had, there was no realistic way that he was going to grant a reprieve. Kleinman's work needed to have been done earlier.

                          Best regards,

                          OneRound
                          Last edited by OneRound; 04-28-2018, 01:34 AM.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by NickB View Post
                            To me the big question is whether they should have pursued with the Rhyl witnesses in the appeal. But we do not know what their client had told them so it is difficult to judge.
                            It was Kleinman's ''in other respects'' comment that I had in mind. The Court of Appeal goes one way and you the other. We don't know. I tend to believe that Sherrard and Kleinman would have pursued Rhyl if Hanratty had given them reason to do so.

                            I don't see how you can blame the delay on Kleinman. If Hanratty had come up with the Rhyl alibi before the trial the witnesses could have been summoned to it in good time. But bear in mind that had this happened Swanwick would have been better prepared to challenge them.
                            Last edited by NickB; 04-28-2018, 03:03 AM.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by NickB View Post
                              It was Kleinman's ''in other respects'' comment that I had in mind. The Court of Appeal goes one way and you the other. We don't know. I tend to believe that Sherrard and Kleinman would have pursued Rhyl if Hanratty had given them reason to do so.

                              I don't see how you can blame the delay on Kleinman. If Hanratty had come up with the Rhyl alibi before the trial the witnesses could have been summoned to it in good time. But bear in mind that had this happened Swanwick would have been better prepared to challenge them.
                              Hi again Nick - although I acknowledge you could see some cynicism in my last post about Kleinman, I don't particularly go any way concerning his ''in other respects'' comment. My issue was the Court so choosing to go the way they did with what he wrote regardless of the circumstances pertaining at the time.

                              Just as Kleinman's silence about the id parade counted against Hanratty at trial, his letter to the Sunday Times counted against him at the 2002 appeal. Another own goal!

                              I also wasn't really blaming any delay on Kleiman but more pointing out that I was unimpressed by his apparent reasoning that choosing not to pursue Rhyl at the appeal but then bombarding Butler about it made things all fine and dandy.

                              I fully accept that Hanratty was the author of his own downfall in many ways. I'm just of the view that Kleinman could and should have helped him far more.

                              Best regards,

                              OneRound

                              Comment


                              • The problem with the Ingledene alibi from a Hanratty perspective is that there was no room available which matched his description of his accommodation. Mrs Jones initially said Hanratty occupied Room 4, which is a single room on the first floor at the front of the property. The prosecution countered with the fact that this room had been occupied by Mr Sayle. Mrs Jones countered this with the bathroom accommodation which might have been made available. Two things are against this. First, Hanratty never said his room had a bath in it. Second, Hanratty's room was at the back, and had a window with curtains, whereas the attic bathroom had a velox window in the roof on the road side of the roof ridge.
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