Rolf Harris(8 Posts)
Rolf Harris has appealed one of his convictions- with a father of one the victims providing evidence in his defence.
But one standing a fair chance of getting all convictions quashes and a further poster man for the campaign for full anonymity to conviction.
Why would a discrepancy in one victim’s statement mean he’d be found not guilty of the other charges? And what about his daughter’s best friend who he sexually harassed from the age of 13?
It won't mean he will be found not guilty of all charges. The best he can hope for at this stage based on the evidence in the appeal is that the convictions are quashed and the case is sent back to the Crown Court for a retrial. So we would be back in the situation before he was tried - he would be neither guilty nor not guilty.
Note that what follows should is not intended to express any opinion on Harris' guilt or innocence.
The basis of the appeal is that one of the charges against him is, according to the defence, provably untrue in that he was not present at the time the alleged offence was committed. The argument is that, when hearing a number of cases together, the jury may decide all of them on the basis of the overall weight of evidence rather than considering each of them individually. In some cases the jury may be convinced to convict on all counts even when the individual cases, looked at in isolation, are quite weak. If the Court of Appeal accepts the evidence that Harris could not have committed one of the offences, the defence would argue that it makes his evidence that he was not present at the time of one of the other offences more credible and weakens the prosecution case on all the charges. If the Court of Appeal decides that one conviction is unsafe it would be normal to say that we cannot then rely on the safety of the other convictions. However, that is not enough to declare Harris not guilty of all charges.
Nothing is decided yet. The Court of Appeal may decide to do nothing, they may quash the conviction for this one offence and leave the rest intact (unlikely) or they may quash the whole lot and send it back for retrial.
Yes, the daughter best friend has always been the one where they is written evidence (a letter from Rolf) of some sort of wrongdoing.
Well it seems justice has been served on this (at least in terms of our legal frame work). They overturned his conviction for the this case but the others stand because clearly this case has no bearing on the others. His defence will have to fight the rest on an individual basis. Without details I would assume the rest of the convictions are pretty solid and genuine. Although I would assume there maybe a slight adjustment to his sentences to reflect his found innocence of this particular case. I assume if there is enough evidence to say the accuser has totally fabricated her particular case the police and CPS will look to try her for faulse allegations?
The Court of Appeal has not adjusted his sentence. Since he has already been released there is little point in doing so.
As the accuser in this particular instance was only 7 or 8 at the time of the alleged incident it will be difficult to show that she has fabricated her case completely. The evidence from her husband strongly suggests that she believes her accusations are true. It is possible, for example, that she was indeed sexually assaulted but has incorrectly identified the assailant. I would be surprised if she faces any legal action by the authorities.
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