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Workers secure fresh victory over Post Office

16 Dec 2019, 17:32

Hundreds of post office workers have won a key victory against the Post Office and the controversial accounting software they were forced to use.

The judgement ends years of campaigning by those affected, some of whom were jailed in cases where the software wrongly logged missing funds.

Mr Justice Fraser said the system was not "remotely robust" and when improved it had a significant number of bugs.

The Post Office last week agreed to pay £58m to settle claims.

The sub-postmasters blame the system for creating big shortfalls in their accounts, discrepancies which led to some being made bankrupt and others prosecuted and sent to prison.

The 400-page judgment ends years of campaigning by those affected.

The Post Office has agreed a payout with 557 claimants after a long-running dispute over the system.

In addition, the Criminal Cases Review Commission is looking into whether a number of the convictions were miscarriages of justice.

Workers secure fresh victory over Post Office

17 Dec 2019, 22:04

so when do the people who prosecuted wrongly get charged

Workers secure fresh victory over Post Office

18 Dec 2019, 20:43

hans solo wrote:so when do the people who prosecuted wrongly get charged

Although a good point, I think you are missing the bigger picture.

The Post Office is one of a select band of organisations who are allowed to prosecute criminal cases themselves, instead of going through the Crown Prosecution Service. But they are also the holders of all the data vital to those prosecutions. So in some trials, the PO is both the prosecutor and the expert witness. I think it is time that the Post Office had it’s right to prosecute criminal trials taken away. Making them go through the CPS would ensure that they are subject to a greater degree of challenge over their evidence before trials take place, and reduce the potential conflicts of interest inherent in the current set-up.

It also seems like a good time to review whether other organisations should be allowed to prosecute their own cases: Royal Mail, for instance.

In civil disputes with Sub-Postmasters, the Post Office controls both the data and the contract terms. Again, this gives them too much power. There needs to be an independent regulator of the contracts, and the NFSP either needs to be freed from its serfdom or abolished.

We should try to prosecute those responsible, but it is always hard to identify the single controlling mind. Changing the system is the best way of stopping it from happening again.

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