McClean redefines collusion as Sins of Commission…

There was a reason Judge Cory didn’t think any of the six cases that he initially looked into would get a decent hearing. If I recall correctly it was bound up with the Enquiries Act of 2005. So it should come as little surprise that are reassured by the outcome of the Billy Wright Inquiry…

There’s a few details worth picking up in the next few days in more detail, but let’s start with the one Mark Devenport has picked up straight away, which is the tightening of the definition of collusion:

One general point which wil have significance for the Nelson and Hamill inquiries later this year is the narrower definition of collusion adopted by the Maclean probe. They have opted for deliberate agreement to commit unlawful acts (i.e a sin of commission) rather than turning a blind eye or deliberately ignoring something (more a sin of ommission). this makes the Maclean definition more restricted than the wide one adopted by Judge Peter Cory and, apparently, the Police Ombudsman and Lord Stevens.

The question now is whether the Nelson and Hamill inquiries will follow the Cory or the Maclean definition of collusion. And if they don’t, shouldn’t this baseline have been agreed when all the collusion inquiries were first instigated?

Indeed. Cory would not have recognised it, and nor would Nuala O’Loan. We await the next tragic episode…

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty