IN A rare legal move,
the two procurators fiscal who considered
complaints against Thomas Hamilton gave
evidence from the witness box at the Cullen Inquiry
was sanctioned by Lord
Mackay of Drumadoon, the Lord
Advocate, under the stricture that they should not be
questioned about why they had taken no action against Hamilton.
Cardle, 62, a retired fiscal
at Dumbarton, said he had received a report on complaints about a
camp run by Hamilton at Inchmoan Island
Lomond in 1988 and confirmed that he had
decided not to initiate criminal proceedings.
He subsequently received
another report on the summer camp, which he realised was a complaint
against the police, and he passed it to Strathclyde Police's
complaints and discipline department.
Reminded by the Crown
counsel, Iain Bonomy, that the report contained
statements from witnesses who had not been interviewed at the time
of the first report, and that police probably intended that he should
reconsider the case against Hamilton, Mr
Cardle said that he would not have done
that. He said he had already marked the case for no proceedings
and it would have been "futile" to consider any other evidence.
Under no circumstances,
according to the rules provided by the Appeal Court, could
he investigate matters which had become available through
a complaint against the police.
Gallacher, 37, formerly a fiscal
depute at Stirling, confirmed that he had refused a search warrant
for Hamilton's home in 1993, after receiving
a report which highlighted potential criminal offences, including
dishonesty, lewd and libidinous practices and a contravention of the
Children and Young Persons Act.
His conclusion was that
the warrant should not be granted on the basis that there was not
enough information that a crime had been committed. "I
thought it was behaviour which was a cause for concern but did not
cross the boundary."
Later the junior Crown
counsel, Jonathan Lake, read the 18-page
independent report prepared on the dealings of the fiscal
departments with Hamilton. It
revealed that Mr Cardle had been troubled
by events at Loch Lomond and thought it
appropriate to refer them to the social work department and children's
of the boys at a later date disclosed discrepancies and
incidents uncorroborated and, although Mr Cardle
recommended no action, he remained concerned.
recorded Mr Gallacher as saying
that, although the large number of photographs of boys,
in skimpy gym gear and in a variety of poses, that had
been taken by Hamilton were
troubling, they could not be described as indecent.
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