A cover-up is an attempt, whether successful or not, to conceal evidence of wrongdoing, error, incompetence or other embarrassing information. In a passive cover-up, information is simply not provided; in an active cover-up, deception is used. The expression is usually applied to people in positions of authority who abuse their power to avoid or silence criticism or to deflect guilt of wrongdoing. Those who initiate a cover-up (or their allies) may be responsible for a misdeed, a breach of trust or duty or a crime. While the terms are often used interchangeably, cover-up involves withholding incriminatory evidence, while whitewash involves releasing misleading evidence. When a scandal breaks, the discovery of an attempt to cover up is often regarded as even more reprehensible than the original deeds. The mildest case, not quite a cover-up, is simply to release news which could be embarrassing but is not important enough to guarantee attention at a time when other news is dominating the headlines, or immediately before a holiday or weekend.
Initially a cover-up may require little effort; it will be carried out by those closely involved with the misdeed. Once some hint of the hidden matter starts to become known, the cover-up gradually draws all the top leadership, at least, of an organization into complicity in covering up a misdeed or even crime that may have originally been committed by a few of its members acting independently. This may be regarded as tacit approval of that behaviour. It is likely that some cover-ups are successful although by definition this cannot be confirmed. Many fail, however, as more and more people are drawn in and the possibility of exposure makes potential accomplices fearful of supporting the cover-up and as loose ends that may never normally have been noticed start to stand out. As it spreads, the cover-up itself creates yet more suspicious circumstances.
The original misdeed being covered may be relatively minor, such as the 'third-rate burglary' which started the Watergate scandal, but the cover-up adds so many additional crimes (obstruction of justice, perjury, payoffs and bribes, in some cases suspicious suicides or outright murder) that the cover-up becomes much more serious than the original crime. Cover-ups do not necessarily require the active manipulation of facts or circumstances. Arguably the most common form of cover-up is one of non-action. It is the conscious failure to release incriminating information by a third party. This “passive cover-up” is often justified by the motive of not wanting to embarrass the culprit or expose them to criminal prosecution or even the belief that the cover-up is justified by protecting the greater community from scandal. Yet, because of the passive cover-up, the misdeed often goes undiscovered and results in harm to others ensuing from its failure to be discovered. Real cover-ups are common enough, but any event which is not completely clear is likely to give rise to a thicket of conspiracy theories alleging covering up of sometimes the most weird and unlikely conspiracies.
People, governments or institutions may try to cover up if
Sometimes an apparently simple and low-risk cover-up grows out of control. For example, an employee may take money covertly from his employer to finance something, in the expectation that (s)he will shortly return it with nobody being the wiser; but the money taken is lost, the employee cannot make good, and must dangerously extend the cover-up. Compulsive gamblers, who irrationally think that they will bet the embezzled money, win, return the stake, and keep their winnings are an example. They will typically steal more, still intending to repay it with winnings, until eventually the shortfall can be concealed no longer.
In UK we have some special laws that greatly simplify a Cover-Up:
(1) →National Security: The primary body responsible for coordinating national security policy in the UK is the →National Security Council. The National Security Council is a committee of the Cabinet of the United Kingdom and was created as part of a wider reform of the national security apparatus. The Chair of the Commitee is always the actual Prime Minister.
See also →Gov UK: Government Security - “The Cabinet Office maintains protective security policies for government. This includes the security policy framework which provides central internal protective security policy and risk management for all government departments, associated bodies and partners handling government information. It is the source on which all localised security policies should be based. The framework was made publicly available for the first time in December 2008; however, it has been necessary to restrict access to some technical and procedural material on security grounds. While security policies will differ according to the range of risks faced by each organisation, the framework sets out a range of mandatory security outcomes. The framework also provides technical information, advice and guidance to support implementation of the policy requirements.”
(Under National Security the commitee also may put a ban on existing files to archive and close them to public for up to 100 years. See an example at →National Archive)
→Overarching Principles: (Extract)
There are some principles common to every area of security:
→Legal Guidance: (Extract)
Framework are:….[exemptions a) to n) follow], some may apply to the "Maddie case":
Detailed guidance on the exemptions is published on the →Ministry of Justice website
See →Wikipedia: (Extract)
The Official Secrets Act 1989 (c. 6) is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that repeals and replaces section 2 of the Official Secrets Act 1911, thereby removing the public interest defence created by that section. Lord Bingham said that the white paper “Reform of Section 2 of the Official Secrets Act 1911” (Cm. 408) (June 1988) was the immediate precursor of this Act and that its recommendations bear directly on the interpretation of this Act.
Section 10 - Penalties: This section provides the penalties and mode of trial for offences under the Act. Section 10(2) provides that a person guilty of an offence under section 8(1) or 8(4) or 8(5) is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or to both. Section 10(1) provides that a person guilty of any other offence under the Act is liable, on conviction on indictment to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years, or to a fine, or to both, or, on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or to both. The words “51 weeks” are prospectively substituted for the words “three months” in section 10(2) by paragraph 39 of Schedule 26 to the Criminal Justice Act 2003.
Samples of penalties are: →Richard Tomlinson, former MI6 agent imprisoned in 1997 for breaking the 1989 Act, by attempting to publish a book detailing his career (sentenced to 12 months in prison). Katharine Gun, former GCHQ translator arrested under the Act whose case was later dropped by the government. O'Connor - Keogh official secrets trial; Al Jazeera bombing memo, (sentenced to 6 months in jail).
See →Wikipedia: (Extract)
A DA-Notice (Defence Advisory Notice), called a Defence Notice (D-Notice) until 1993, is an official request to news editors not to publish or broadcast items on specified subjects for reasons of national security. The system is still in use in the United Kingdom.
In the UK the original D-Notice system was introduced in 1912 and run as a voluntary system by a joint committee headed by an Assistant Secretary of the War Office and a representative of the Press Association. Any D-Notices or DA-notices are only advisory requests, and so are not legally enforceable; hence, news editors can choose not to abide by them. However, they are generally complied with by the media. In 1971, all existing D-Notices were cancelled and replaced by standing D-Notices, which gave general guidance on what might be published and what was discouraged, and what would require further advice from the secretary of the Defence, Press and Broadcasting Advisory Committee (DPBAC). In 1993, the notices were renamed DA-Notices.
As of 2008, there are five standing DA-Notices and one proposed:
According to an article in Defense Viewpoints, from 1997 to 2008 there were “30 occasions where the committee secretary has written to specific editors when a breach in the D-Notice guidelines is judged to have occurred.”
See also the →D-notice_affair, the unlawful use of the D-Notice by British PM Wilson. It was in connection with the →Baker Street robbery. It has often been reported that after four days of news coverage British authorities issued a D-Notice, requesting that such reporting be discontinued for reasons of national security and the story disappeared from newspapers. It is claimed by national newspapers in recent years, that some of the security boxes contained embarrassing or nationally sensitive material and that the purpose of the request was to protect a prominent member of the British Royal Family.
See →Wikipedia: (Extract)
Super-injunctions in English law refer to a type of injunction in English tort law that prevent publication of the thing that is in issue and also prevents the reporting of the fact that the injunction exists at all. The term was coined by a Guardian journalist covering the Trafigura controversy. Due to their very nature media organisations are not able to report who has obtained a superinjunction without being in contempt of court.
See also →Wikipedia on UK-Super-injunction: “In England and Wales, injunctions whose existence and details may not be legally reported, in addition to facts or allegations which may not be disclosed, have been issued; they have been informally dubbed “super-injunctions”.
An example was the super-injunction raised in September 2009 by Carter-Ruck solicitors on behalf of oil trader Trafigura, prohibiting the reporting of an internal Trafigura report into the 2006 Côte d'Ivoire toxic waste dump scandal. The existence of the super-injunction was revealed only when it was referred to in a parliamentary question that was subsequently circulated on the Internet (parliamentary privilege protects statements which would otherwise be held to be in contempt of court). Before it could be challenged in court, the injunction was then varied to permit reporting of the question. By long legal tradition, parliamentary proceedings may be reported without restriction. Parliamentary proceedings are covered by absolute privilege, but the reporting of those proceedings in newspapers is only covered by qualified privilege. Another example of the use of a super-injunction was in a libel case in which a plaintiff who claimed he was defamed by family members in a dispute over a multimillion-pound family trust obtained anonymity for himself and for his relatives.
The term “hyper-injunction” has also been used to describe an injunction similar to a super-injunction but also including an order that the injunction must not be discussed with members of Parliament, journalists, or lawyers. One known hyper-injunction was obtained at the High Court in 2006, preventing its subject from saying that paint used in water tanks on passenger ships can break down and release potentially toxic chemicals. This example became public knowledge in Parliament under parliamentary privilege. By May 2011, Private Eye claimed to be aware of 53 super-injunctions and anonymised privacy injunctions, though Lord Neuberger's report into the usage of super-injunctions revealed that only two super-injunctions had been granted since January 2010. Many media sources were wrongly stating that all →gagging orders were super-injunctions.
A →Gag Order A gag order, or anonymity order, is sometimes issued by courts in the United Kingdom to protect privacy, prevent harm to suspects, prisoners, witnesses, victims, or to protect 'national security'. In the Allan Chappelow murder case, the trial was held mostly in camera and media were prevented from speculating on the case. The order was imposed after a “compelling case” made by prosecutors, despite overwhelming media opposition brought by a legal challenge to the ruling. This criminal case has been thought to be the first in which a gagging order was imposed. According to WikiLeaks, “the Guardian [has] been served with 10 secret gag orders —so-called “super-injunctions” [between January and September 2009]. In 2008, the paper was served with six. In 2007, five.”
In Spring 2011, gagging orders, or “super-injunctions” as they were called, were being referred to almost daily in the United Kingdom after a number of high-profile public figures, including celebrities and politicians, censored the British media from revealing information about their personal lives, such as affairs and dealings with prostitutes. Gag orders protecting the privacy of convicted child murderers such as Mary Bell, Jon Venables and David McGreavy, in order to protect them from revenge attacks, have also been controversial because of public concerns about the inability to avoid such persons and protect victims' families and other children from being harmed by them.
This system of secrecy uncontrollable by the public is unique in democratic Europe. It switches the fourth estate, the press, de facto off. Even the Freedom-Of-Information-Act thus remains ineffective. The public will be duped, especially since may not even be reported if at all a “super-injunction” exists. The inevitable consequence is a mutual system of mistrust between establishment and the people.
Even the quite weak, but only, public weapon against this system is under severe attack: See latest (18-Dec.-2015): →The Guardian, Tom Watson urges David Cameron to drop 'sinister' FoI review: ”David Cameron must abandon his “sinister” review of the Freedom of Information Act that could return the UK to the dark ages of private government, Tom Watson has said. In a speech in London, the Labour deputy leader urged the government to drop its FOI commission which has itself been condemned for lacking transparency and initially planning to take evidence in private. The composition of the panel has also been criticised, because it includes the former home secretary Jack Straw who has previously spoken out against the FOI and called for the legislation to be rewritten…“The information commissioner described the review as an attempt to return to the dark ages of private government. Just think about that for a moment: the dark ages of private government, from the person charged with upholding transparency. That is sinister stuff but it’s true.”…“As prime minister, he is methodically closing all the doors and the shutters, drawing the blinds and the curtains, retreating to the shadows at the back of the national farmhouse,” he said. “He wants to govern from the gloom in the old-fashioned way, without the inconvenience of scrutiny, abandoning any hope of decency or trust.” Ministers are considering curbs on FOI because they argue it has become too burdensome to administrate. They are looking at placing limits on requests and the possibility of charging for information. Defenders of the act claim FOI has been used to uncover more than 200 major public sector scandals. These include the abuse of MPs’ expenses, increasing pay and expense levels of council chief executives, the black spider memos from Prince Charles to government ministers, and the growing number of racism claims within the Metropolitan police.“
In any criminal case one may be confronted with a conspiracy or conspiracy-theory. Why is this the case? For this we first have to deal with the according definitions:
A →criminal Conspiracy is:
“In criminal law, a conspiracy is an agreement between two or more persons to commit a crime at some time in the future. Criminal law in some countries or for some conspiracies may require that at least one overt act must also have been undertaken in furtherance of that agreement, to constitute an offense. There is no limit on the number participating in the conspiracy and, in most countries, no requirement that any steps have been taken to put the plan into effect (compare attempts which require proximity to the full offence). For the purposes of concurrence, the actus reus is a continuing one and parties may join the plot later and incur joint liability and conspiracy can be charged where the co-conspirators have been acquitted or cannot be traced. Finally, repentance by one or more parties does not affect liability but may reduce their sentence.”
A →civil Conspiracy is:
“A civil conspiracy or collusion is an agreement between two or more parties to deprive a third party of legal rights or deceive a third party to obtain an illegal objective. A conspiracy may also refer to a group of people who make an agreement to form a partnership in which each member becomes the agent or partner of every other member and engage in planning or agreeing to commit some act. It is not necessary that the conspirators be involved in all stages of planning or be aware of all details. Any voluntary agreement and some overt act by one conspirator in furthance of the plan are the main elements necessary to prove a conspiracy. A conspiracy may exist whether legal means are used to accomplish illegal results, or illegal means used to accomplish something legal. “Even when no crime is involved, a civil action for conspiracy may be brought by the persons who were damaged.” In the law of tort, the legal elements necessary to establish a civil conspiracy are substantially the same as for establishing a criminal conspiracy, i.e. there is an agreement between two or more natural persons to break the law at some time in the future or to achieve a lawful aim by unlawful means. The criminal law often requires one of the conspirators to take an overt step to accomplish the illegal act to demonstrate the reality of their intention to break the law, whereas in a civil conspiracy, an overt act towards accomplishing the wrongful goal may not be required. Etymologically, the term comes from Latin con- “with, together”, and spirare “to breathe”.”
Conspiracies may be an illegal offence related to the →Criminal Law Act 1977 :
“The Criminal Law Act 1977 (c.45) is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Most of it only applies to England and Wales. It creates the offence of conspiracy in English law. It also created offences concerned with criminal trespass in premises, made changes to sentencing, and created an offence of falsely reporting the existence of a bomb.”
So from definition we have always to deal with a conspiracy if e.g. more than one (secret or known) offender is under our witnesses. There is no upper limit but indeed.
A → “Conspiracy Theory” then is of course any theory or hypothesis of an alleged (secret) conspiracy.
“A conspiracy theory is an explanatory proposition that accuses two or more persons, a group, or an organization of having caused or covered up, through secret planning and deliberate action, an illegal or harmful event or situation.….Although the term “conspiracy theory” has acquired a derogatory meaning over time and is often used to dismiss or ridicule beliefs in conspiracies, it has also continued to be used by some to refer to actual, proven conspiracies, such as U.S. President Richard Nixon and his aides conspiring to cover up Watergate. Conspiracy theories are sometimes proven correct, such as the theory that United States President Richard Nixon and his aides conspired to cover up Watergate, as well as the theory that some of President Ronald Reagan's aides conspired to cover up the Iran-Contra affair. Katherine K. Young writes that “every real conspiracy has had at least four characteristic features: groups, not isolated individuals; illegal or sinister aims, not ones that would benefit society as a whole; orchestrated acts, not a series of spontaneous and haphazard ones; and secret planning, not public discussion. Some historians have put forward the idea that more recently the United States has become the home of conspiracy theories because so many high-level prominent conspiracies have been undertaken and uncovered since the 1960s”. The existence of such real conspiracies helps feed the belief in conspiracy theories.”
As conspiracies are always some secret agreements between some people such agreements are not easily been investigated. Thus on the other side also every seemingly not easily explainable fact in the world may be explained by a more or less →ridiculous Conspiracy Theory. The nicely list at Wikipedia shows some of the widespread mostly unsustainable such theories.
The ridiculousness of most such common conspiracy theories but unfortunately give those who actually indeed do conspire the possibility to ridicule any assignable accusation presented as a ludicrous (Conspiracy-)Theory. So there is of course a large difference in the credibility of Conspiracy Theories, depending on how much they are provable. An incomplete list of yet proven political Conspiracies may also be found at →Wikipedia. A nice article is also to be found at →My Little Underground: When Conspiracy Theory Becomes Real Thanks To Leon Brittan
See definitions on Wikipedia →Corruption:
In philosophical, theological, or moral discussions, corruption is spiritual or moral impurity or deviation from an ideal. Corruption may include many activities including bribery and embezzlement. Government, or 'political', corruption occurs when an office-holder or other governmental employee acts in an official capacity for personal gain.
Corruption always includes a Conspiracy. Not every Conspiracy may be a Corruption, but every Corruption is a Concpiracy.
Corruption can occur on different scales. There is corruption that occurs as small favors between a small number of people (petty corruption), corruption that affects the government on a large scale (grand corruption), and corruption that is so prevalent that it is part of the every day structure of society, including corruption as one of the symptoms of organized crime (systemic corruption).
See also some remarks and informations on UK freemasonry at The "Scottish-Connection". Another UK speciality may be found at Wikipedia →Cash for Honours: “Cash for Honours (also Cash for Peerages, Loans for Lordships, Loans for Honours or Loans for Peerages) is the name given by some in the media to a political scandal in the United Kingdom in 2006 and 2007 concerning the connection between political donations and the award of life peerages. A loophole in electoral law in the United Kingdom means that although anyone donating even small sums of money to a political party has to declare this as a matter of public record, those loaning money at commercial rates of interest did not have to make a public declaration….”. See also →The Independent, Scandal: Just how corrupt is Britain?.
In the case version 1 the Accidential Killing Theory we have to deal at least with:
In the case version 2 Abduction of Madeleine Hypothesis we have to deal at least with:
In the case version 1 the Accidential Killing Theory we have to deal with:
In the case version 2 Abduction of Madeleine Hypothesis we have to deal with:
In practically all cases a criminal investigator will be confronted with at least some witnesses who lie. And just from definition, in virtually more than 90% of cases he will also be confronted at least with a small conspiracy. So after collecting all evidence and combining them in a logical way, one has to find out
So is the first question: Why do People lie?
Second question is, how do we find out?
A →scapegoat is a person unfairly blamed for some misfortune, or an actual goat “Azazel” used in a Jewish ritual. The act of scapegoating is a recent coinage for the practice of singling out a party →as a scapegoat, i.e. for unmerited negative treatment or blame. The Ancient Greeks practiced a scapegoating rite in which a cripple or beggar or criminal was cast out of the community, either in response to a natural disaster (such as a plague, famine or an invasion) or in response to a calendrical crisis (such as the end of the year). In psychology and sociology, the practice of selecting someone as a scapegoat has led to the concept of scapegoating.
→Scapegoating is the practice of singling out any party for unmerited negative treatment or blame as a scapegoat. Scapegoating may be conducted by individuals against individuals (e.g. “he did it, not me!”), individuals against groups (e.g., “I couldn't see anything because of all the tall people”), groups against individuals (e.g., “Jane was the reason our team didn't win”), and groups against groups. A scapegoat may be an adult, sibling, child, employee, peer, ethnic or religious group, or country. A whipping boy, identified patient or “fall guy” are forms of scapegoat.
In criminal investigations presenting Scapegoats to the public is unfortunately not that seldom. Sometimes it happens when Police forces and Prosecutors are under a high level of public scrutiny and thus heavily stressed. Another reason of course is given if somebody influential related to the investigation doesn't want a special suspect to be under severe scrutiny. Today in the age of computers and large criminal data banks, car driving and mobile phones it is quite easy to find scapegoats.
As from criminal statistics we know that around 5% of the population have a criminal record. If we think e.g. that a possible offender should be in the range of about one hours drive (around 50 miles) we will always find a large quantity of people with a criminal record in this region (especially in crowded areas like London it is an easy task anyway). With the help of databases we then can sort out individuals with arbitrary profiles, like which may be profession, sex, race, past crimes etc. what ever one likes. Through phone, credit card and/or car driving records, IP numbers and internet use, etc. also an at least rough pattern of the individuals movements and alleged behaviour may be found out. The next thing then is to find, or simply to construct, a seemingly relation to the crime under investigation.
Such kinds of Not-Cause-related by evidence investigations are more or less forbidden in most democratic countries. The reason is that by this way of investigations a lot of innocent people are pestered and the risk of false accusations are extremely high. Also every investigator and prosecutor knows from experience, that mentally weak or ill persons may be forced to even false confessions under such severe stress. A well known sample related to our investigation is e.g. given in the case of the Jill Dando (→see wikipedia) murder. Not-Case-related by evidence investigations therefore are only lawful (laws differ very much by country) if in cases of a very severe crime there is indeed not any direct evidence to be found and thus the individual rights in a democracy may be overruled in a special case by decision of an appropriate judge.
Through hundreds of →alleged sightings of Madeleine McCann, the range of “possible” suspects was extended to any distance. See: e.g. →"tractor-man", suspects, →Creepy Man, →Barcelona-woman (see her also at official FindMadeleine →Suspects-Page [14.Dec.2014] with alleged Tanner-Sighting suspect too.) , latest →Brazilian couple and inummerable more. For 2014 see a pictured list of tabloids at →Anorak.