Billy Burns

 

-  by
Poll Tax

 

 

 

 

The Illegal Poll Tax

Go directly to the chronology of events LINK

24.06.88     In the beginning - determining whether the Poll Tax is an antinomy or simply a blunt, illegally enacted tax.

26.07.88    I purchase a copy of both the poll tax legislation and the Treaty of Union.

04.08.89     I inform the poll tax officer Ian M Rogers I was appealing against my name being included in his illegal register.

01.12.89     The poll tax officer sets the date for the hearing of my appeal.

11.12.89     I send Ian Rogers the written terms of my appeal.

18.12.89    My appeal is heard by the poll tax officer Ian M Rogers in his Edinburgh council office.

20.12.89    I receive a letter from Ian Rogers refusing my appeal.

28.02.90     The first date set for my appeal to the Sheriff Court against the poll tax officer Ian Rogers' decision.

18.05.90     Solicitor Randolph Murray’s appeal is heard in the Court of Session.

28.05.90     My appeal is heard in the Sheriff Court before Sheriff Andrew Montgomery Bell.

13.06.90     I receive the written decision from the Sheriff Court refusing my appeal.

27.06.90     I appear in the Consistorial Sheriff Court regarding expenses claimed by the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers.

05.07.90     I write to the Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson QC by way of a Note of Appeal and complaint.

13.07.90     The Sheriff Principal sends my Note of Appeal to the Court of Session.

24.07.90     My one and only meeting with solicitor Randolph Murray.

31.07.90     I receive a panic phone call from Randolph Murray from the Supreme Courts.

29.04.91     Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole grants a warrant against me in my absence and without intimation.

22.05.91     I complain to Sheriff Poole, explaining I still had an appeal pending against Sheriff Bell's earlier decision.

18.11.91     Lothian Regional Council apply for a summary warrant behind my back for so-called arrears of poll tax.

20.11.91     A summary warrant is granted by Sheriff Peter McNeill against me in my absence and without intimation.

16.07.92     I receive 4 days notice about the Motion and Account of Expenses, but I am not told in which court I should attend.

20.07.92     A Motion of Account of Expenses is railroaded through the court by Sheriff Peter McNeill.

27.11.92     The official "Date of Sequestration" - done and dusted before I appear in court to oppose it.

21.12.92     At the show hearing Sheriff McNeill railroads the already done and dusted sequestration through the court.

31.12.92     Graham Ritchie, Chartered Accountant, informs me he has been appointed interim trustee.

11.01.93      I reply to Graham Ritchie to make him cognizant of the details that made me illegally sequestrated.

08.02.93     I send Graham Ritchie a summary of my exposé of the corruption and the invalidity in Scotland of the poll tax.

05.04.93     The pretended creditor and poll tax officer Ian Rogers’ job in the council as CCRO is made redundant.

05.05.94     Graham Ritchie contacts me for the first time for almost thirteen months.

11.10.94     A falsely and belatedly uttered "Oath by Creditor" is produced by Graham Ritchie.

06.12.94     Citations received about the would-be trustee Graham Ritchie pursuing the sale of the family home.

22.12.94     Edinburgh Evening News reports that poll tax debt [so-called] of around £120 million could be written off.

17.02.95     I am formally charged by the police for not complying with the pseudo trustee Graham Ritchie's instructions.

15.03.95     Sheriff McNeill sinisterly puts back the date of the Options Hearing.

22.03.95     A sneaky but crucial Plea-in-Law is added into the “Record with Adjustments”.

12.04.95     Advocate for the pursuer successfully moves the Sheriff Court to remit the Cause to the Court of Session.

09.05.95     An offer is made by a third party to pay the pretended debt before it escalates.

19.05.95     I receive a summons for the "criminal charge" of failing to comply with the interim trustee, Graham Ritchie.

14.08.95     There is still no reply received about the offer to pay the bogus debt.

21.08.95     I appear before Sheriff Bell in the intermediate diet of the "criminal charge", asking for an adjournment.

23.08.95     I ask the Regional Procurator Fiscal to cite many prominent people in the legal system as witnesses.

05.09.95     I am served a copy writ and ordered to conform to the warrant.

05.10.95     Sheriff McNeill railroads the deferment of the discharge date through the court.

12.10.95     I learn for the first time about the offer that was made to pay the bogus debt.

12.10.95     I complain to the Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson about Sheriff McNeill's deferment of the discharge date.

25.10.95     The Sheriff Principal says my accusations against Sheriff McNeill could amount to contempt of court.

30.10.95     My reply, accusing Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson QC of acquiescing in the corruption.

04.11.95     I ask for a jury trial for the charge of “not complying with the pretended trustee”.

09.11.95      Sheriff McNeill sends me a medical certificate excusing him from giving evidence at my trial.

15.11.95      A petition is raised before the trial to excuse members of the legal profession from giving evidence.

15.11.95     In a contrived “trial-by-ambush” the same day Sheriff Richard John Dinwoodie Scott finds me guilty.

21.11.95     I appeal against Sheriff Scott’s verdict.

27.11.95     The official date that the two years deferment of the discharge date of the bankruptcy began.

13.09.96     For the first time agents for Graham Ritchie acknowledge an offer was made to pay the bogus debt - 16 months on.

07.10.96     The pursuer Graham Ritchie claims £1,950.00 for sending one circular to one pseudo-creditor, Ian Rogers.

09.10.96      The pursuer Graham Ritchie, sleazes in a sneakily additional Plea-in-Law.

06.12.96     The High Court of Appeal hears my appeal against Sheriff Richard John Dinwoodie Scott’s guilty verdict.

06.12.96      The Lord Justice-Clerk Ross, Lord Morison and Lord Cowie announce their welcome verdict.

10.01.97     The Closed Record is received late - without consent - yet Lord Alan C M Johnston allows it.

17.03.97     The pursuer Graham Ritchie claims £1,113.50 for sending one circular to one fictitious creditor.

03.04.97     Lord Eassie sinisterly refuses my motion to discharge the Procedure Roll.

16.04.97     I lodge an appeal against the pursuer Graham Ritchie of Ernst & Young's Account of Intromission.

07.05.97     Temporary Lord Ordinary T Gordon Coutts hears my "infallible" case at the Procedure Roll.

21.05.97     Temporary Lord Ordinary Coutts sinisterly suppresses my entire defence.

27.05.97     I appeal against Lord Coutts’ sinister decision.

24.07.97     Lord Johnston joins the bandwagon and upholds Temporary Lord Ordinary Coutts’ decision.

30.07.97     Graham Ritchie claims £1,236.81 for sending one circular to one unduly appointed creditor, Ian Rogers.

27.11.97     The official date when the two years deferment of the discharge date of the bankruptcy ended.

21.04.98     The pursuer Graham Ritchie claims £1,762.50 for sending one circular to one would-be creditor.

21.04.98    The pursuer Graham Ritchie claims £634.50 for sending one circular to the false creditor.

20.07.98    The pursuer Graham Ritchie claims £11,348.62 for sending one circular to the pretended creditor.

28.07.98    I lodge another appeal against the pursuer Graham Ritchie’s Account of Intromission.

03.09.98    For the umpteenth time my appeal against the Account of intromission is stymied and returned.

26-27.11.98    The "Proof'" Diet began, presided over by Lord Philip in Court 14 of the Court of Session.

30.09.99    The semi-skilled gangster, Graham Ritchie is sacked by the Ernst & Young Gang.

14.01.00    A nod and a wink from Defence Advocate to Lord Philip has me removed from the courtroom at the Proof Hearing.

11.02.00    Eric William Robertson, legal agent for the Pursuer, sums up the case on behalf of Graham Ritchie.

14.06.00    Lord Philip releases his "Opinion" - Not to the Defenders in the lawsuit, but underhandedly to the media.

02.10.14     STV reports that the First Minister announces poll tax debt will be wiped out in Scotland.

03.10.14     The Herald expands on the same poll tax issue.

Chronology Of My Fight Against The Illegal Poll Tax - by Billy Burns

The following is a rendition of facts in chronological order, summarising the entire catalogue of injustices by the hand of crooked operatives in the extended legal system.  They fused together to enforce an illegal Act of Parliament: the poll tax legislation.  I was to discover that not only was the poll tax morally unjustifiable, it was illegal in Scotland.  Like many others, I was perilously caught out in lethal establishment lawlessness.  An exaggeration?   To rub salt into the wound, the Thatcher Government forced patresfamilias to act as unpaid tax collectors in their own households, creating many divisions in families the length and breadth of Britain.

24.06.88   -  Having previously received the requested copy of Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union 1707 from Tam Dalyell MP, House of Commons, I wrote to Ian M. Rogers, the Community Charges Registration Officer (CCRO) for Lothian, requesting more information on the poll tax than what was provided on the official document, preprepared for public perusal.  I did this to avoid any misinterpretation of the law concerning the Community Charge (hereinafter referred to as the "poll tax").

26.07.88  -  I received a response from Ian Rogers, which stated: "Other than the Act of Parliament (copies of which can be obtained from Her Majesty's Stationary Office (HMSO)) I regret I have no additional general information beyond what has been provided via the Scottish Office pamphlet or the Notes and Warning and General Guidance sheets provided with your inquiry form."

(2)   -  To establish whether or not the 1987 tax was an antinomy or simply a blunt, illegally enacted tax, unconstitutional and unenforceable in Scotland, I purchased from HMSO both a copy of the legislation pertaining to the poll tax (i.e., the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc (Scotland) Act 1987) and the full terms of the Union With Scotland Act 1706.   The latter is the identical English version of the Scottish Treaty of Union 1707 (hereinafter referred to as the "Treaty of Union").

30.07.88  -  I wrote to the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers, quoting Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union, asking if I should remain within the laws concerning public right and private with regard to the Treaty of Union or should I bide by legislation that is a crime against the people of Scotland [i.e., the poll tax legislation]?

30.08.88  -  In response to that letter, the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers wrote: "I note what you say with regard to the Treaty of Union but regret to advise you that I must carry out the duties placed upon me by the above Act (i.e., the poll tax legislation).

(2)  -  This seemed like the classic cop-out by Ian Rogers; refusing to take responsibility for his own actions, in stark contravention of the Treaty of Union.

04.08.89   -  I wrote to the poll tax officer informing him that in terms of Section 16(1a) of the poll tax legislation I was appealing against my name being entered in his register for liability to pay the poll tax because the tax was inconsistent with and contrary to Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union.

01.12.89   -  The poll tax officer, Ian Rogers sent me a "Notice of Hearing of Appeal", setting the date for Monday, 18 December 1989 at 10.30am in the council offices at 30-31 Queen Street, Edinburgh.

11.12.89   -  I sent Ian Rogers the written terms of my appeal based on the fact that the poll tax was inconsistent with and contrary to Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union.

18.12.89   -  My appeal was heard by the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers.    It was based on the fact that the poll tax legislation levied a tax on the people of Scotland, but not throughout the rest of the United Kingdom, even though it was for evident inutility of the subjects in Scotland.   Moreover, the following year when the almost similar legislation was to be introduced in England, failure to comply would be a criminal offence, while in Scotland it would remain a civil wrong.   Taken separately or together, these details made the legislation in Scotland unequivocally contrary to and inconsistent with Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union, rendering it unconstitutional, illegal and unenforceable in Scotland.

(2)  -  I read out the full terms of my appeal as submitted on 11 December 1989, adding that I did not want to break the law, which I most certainly would be doing if I paid the invalid tax.   The poll tax officer said he considered himself bound by the poll tax legislation.   I told him he was bound by the Treaty of Union.    He disagreed, saying he felt he was bound by the later Act; that is, the 1987 unconstitutional one.   I said I was aware he had a job to do, but as a person he was bound by the Treaty of Union.   I was not appealing to a job or a duty, I was appealing to a person; and every person must hold himself responsible for doing the right thing.

(3)  -  I mentioned that we were all bound by the same law and anyone who participates in the poll tax is breaking the law.   I then said that I certainly would not break the law by willingly participating in it.  Nothing has changed to this day to sway that sentiment.  I also said he was acquiescing in, if not a crime, a civil wrong.

(4)   -  Ian Rogers responded: "I feel bound by the existing decision of the sheriff in the Randolph Murray case."    He was referring to the Randolph Murray case in which he himself was the respondent.   It was decided upon by Sheriff Peter G.B. McNeill on 12 June 1989 after representations from advocate Robert Reed (subsequently appointed judge, Lord Reed) speaking on behalf of Ian Rogers, were preferred by Sheriff McNeill to the representations of Randolph Murray.   Randolph Murray was a solicitor with Marshall Henderson & Whyte, 15 Stafford Street, Edinburgh, and unbeknown to me at the time, his appeal against Sheriff McNeill's decision was lying in the Court of Session.   It was not to be heard until Friday, 18 May 1990.   The poll tax officer, Ian Rogers, therefore, fraudulently used the Randolph Murray case as a supportive argument or as a matter of persuasion while knowing fully well it was sub judice (still under judicial deliberation) because at that selfsame time Ian Rogers was in the process of responding to Randolph Murray's appeal at the higher tribunal.

(5)  -  In any event, Randolph Murray had appealed under Section 29(1) of the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc (Scotland) Act 1987 against the imposition of a civil penalty, but I had appealed under Section 16(1) against my name being entered in his register for liability to pay the invalid tax, so no comparable supportive argument existed.    Besides, Randolph Murray was not seeking a decision in his process that the 1987 Act was contrary to law, whereas I was not so much seeking a decision that the 1987 Act was contrary to law as seeking recognition that it was contrary to law; that law being the Treaty of Union 1707.  I was told I would receive the result of his decision within a few days.

20.12.89   -  I received the decision from Ian Rogers, refusing my appeal along with his "Reason for Decision".   It was a brute assertion rather than a response to all the points I raised.   He called on, as a supportive argument or as a matter of persuasion, six other supposedly similar appeals that had been heard in various regions in Scotland, including the one in the Lothian Region by Randolph Murray in which he was the respondent.   But I was the first and perhaps only person who appealed under Section 16(1) of the 1987 Act, so those appeals were improperly used as supportive arguments to refuse my appeal.

19.01.90  -  I lodged my appeal in the Sheriff Court under Section 16(2) of the poll tax legislation - as advised by the Sheriff Clerk Depute.  This was the final date before the appeal became time-barred.

(2)  -  I had phoned around several solicitors in an attempt to get legal representation to lodge an application for legal aid, given that I was unemployed, but it appeared as though every solicitor had been warned off the course, so to speak, from higher places in order to stymie poll tax dissenters, because they all asked me the same question: "Why do you not want to pay the tax?"    Asking a solicitor to represent me was like asking the Ulster Unionist Parties to form a conclave to appoint a new Pope.   On the final day before the cause became time-barred, I received a giro from the Department of Social Security in respect of previous underpayments and so was able to pay the mandatory £23.00 Sheriff Court fees to lodge my appeal.

07.02.90  -  Drummond Miller WS sent me a copy of the transcript of evidence of my appeal held before the poll tax officer, with a view to the forthcoming appeal in the Sheriff Court, as mentioned at 18.12.89 above. LINK

28.02.90   -  My appeal was supposed to be heard this day in the Sheriff Court, India Buildings, Victoria Street, Edinburgh, but Ian Rogers, the poll tax officer did not turn up to defend his earlier decision.    A young female solicitor from Drummond Miller WS appeared in his place and handed me a copy of the "Answers" to my appeal.    Contained within the "Answers" it was admitted that, at the appeal before the poll tax officer, I had "read out a statement in the terms averred ... [and] made supplementary observations as averred."

(2)  -  As a result of the poll tax officer's nonappearance, she asked the sheriff to consider a postponement.    Had I not turned up, on the other hand, the solicitor would most likely have asked the sheriff to consider the judgement to be entered non prosequitor (i.e., entered against the plaintiff (myself) for failing to appear in court to prosecute a suit)) and I would have almost certainly lost my appeal there and then.   However, I did appear and, despite my protests, using the same litmus test, as it were, the appeal was not upheld but postponed until 28 May 1990. LINK

18.05.90 -  Outwith my ken at the time, solicitor Randolph Murray's appeal to the Court of Session was heard before the Lord President Lord Hope, LINK and Lords Grieve and Kirkwood.    Randolph Murray was representing several members of CAP-T (Citizens Against the poll tax), a middle-class group organised to fight the poll tax.   His earlier appeal on 12 June 1989 was refused by Sheriff McNeill, hence his further appeal to the higher tribunal. See 18.12.89 (4) LINK

(2)   -  Robert Reed, advocate (and soon to be appointed Scotland's youngest ever judge for his sins) represented the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers.   Randolph Murray's advocate left him in the lurch, backing out the previous day, so he had to present his own case.   Being a solicitor, however, he would feel a lot less ill at ease than would a layman presenting his own case.   After his hearing the decision was withheld ad avizandum (until a later date).

(3)  -  A more significant connection with the Randolph Murray case manifests itself hereinafter. LINK

28.05.90   -  The appeal that ought to have been heard on 28 February 1990 was presided over this day by Sheriff Andrew Montgomery Bell in the Sheriff Court, India Buildings.    Since I had been stymied from legal representation, therefore legal aid, I represented myself.   The poll tax officer, Ian Rogers appeared in court but not to justify or defend his earlier decision.    He sat in the public gallery to observe the proceedings almost incognito, having hired the advocate Robert Reed to defend his earlier decision, following on my appeal to him in his office on 18 December 1989. LINK

(2)  -  It is important to remember, this extravagant but unnecessary engagement of the advocate was directly responsible for my later sequestration/bankruptcy, which was, in every respect, stage-managed.   To save embarrassment to those responsible for creating the subsequent alleged debt would later be claimed to be for arrears or nonpayment of the poll tax.   It would seem that most people in the extended legal system who became involved with this case preferred to forget that fact; were uncomfortable with it and, in the event of future media probing, had it consigned to the annals as poll tax arrears.

(3)  -  After the initial introductions and formalities in the well of the court, Sheriff Bell invited me to lead my case.   I read out the full terms of my appeal, which was submitted in advance to the court.   It was similar to my appeal to the poll tax officer on 18 December 1989 , in that the poll tax legislation was invalid as it was unequivocally contrary to and inconsistent with Article XVIII of the Treaty Of Union 1707. LINK  Part of my appeal pointed out: "Since the 1707 Treaty was enacted by both parliaments to become the highest joint authority in the kingdom, no sheriff in any sheriffdom, nor anyone else for that matter, is competent to preside over the abandonment, the noncompliance or even the underestimation of the legislation pertaining to it.    So merely the acknowledgement by this court that it accepts that fact would in itself be a vindication of my appeal because if this court is not competent to overrule the Treaty of Union 1707 it is evident that it must accept the legal admissibility of the grounds on which I base, indeed establish, my appeal.   I therefore crave the court to acknowledge and accept the legality of the Treaty of Union 1707.

(4)   -  Sheriff Bell agreed there is not one person alive who has the competence to overrule or disregard the Act that joined the parliaments of Scotland and England: the Treaty of Union 1707.

(5)  -  Robert Reed, advocate for the poll tax officer, argued, unconvincingly, that the "evident utility" safeguard in Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union did not apply in my case because the poll tax legislation involved "public right" facets of the law rather than "private right".   (Article XVIII is unequivocal in defining that "no alteration be made in laws which concern 'private right' except for evident utility of the subjects within Scotland".)

(6)   -  Sheriff Bell fastened on to Robert Reed's flimsy interpretation of the law concerning taxes and said: "Although matters of taxation concern 'public right', it cannot be disputed that the poll tax is also very much a matter of 'private right' because it affects everyone individually."

(7)  -  Agreeing wholeheartedly with Sheriff Bell, I enlarged upon his more prudent interpretation, expressing that members of the public are held individually responsible for either registering for liability to pay poll tax or for appealing against such liability.    And noncompliance by those private citizens carries a series of civil penalties involving a body of law that deals specifically with the rights of private individuals (i.e., the civil law).   If a person decides thereafter to appeal against the imposition of a civil penalty, the appeal is heard before a civil court and not the public (or criminal) court, and with no participation by the public prosecutor.

(8)  -  With the wind taken out his sails, as it were, Robert Reed fumbled his way aimlessly through the rest of the proceedings, quoting past cases intended as "matters of persuasion" that bore no relation whatsoever to my case.   But to be fair, he had no defensible case to state.   For instance, one ridiculous "supportive argument" he advanced, rather illogically, was about fishing rights in the North Sea.   I could not refrain from making inroads and broke with court etiquette, enthusiastically interjecting with: "What on earth has fishing rights got to do with the poll tax?"   Although he looked unsettled, the terrain favoured him more auspiciously than he could have imagined when Sheriff Bell cast a rapid eye in my direction and denounced my comment in unmeasured terms.   It looked as though Robert Reed would have rather gossiped himself to death than address the substance of my appeal.

(9)  -  Deceitfully, Robert Reed used the case of Randolph Murray -v- Ian Rogers as a supportive argument, knowing full well that Randolph Murray's appeal had been heard ten days earlier (18 May 1990 ) in the Court of Session and the decision was withheld ad avizandum. LINK  And since Robert Reed also represented the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers in court that day, he improperly but wilfully used Randolph Murray's case as a matter of persuasion while it was sub judice.   This was similar to Ian Rogers' ruse after he heard my appeal in the council offices in Queen Street, Edinburgh, on 18 December 1989. LINK

(10)  -  The only real similarity between Randolph Murray's appeal in the Court of Session and my appeal in the Sheriff Court was that we were both stymied from obtaining the desired legal representation, forcing us both to represent ourselves.  But, as touched upon at 18.05.90, paragraph 2, Randolph Murray was a solicitor, therefore he was not put in as precarious a situation as myself. LINK

(11)  -  At the conclusion, Sheriff Bell asked the then advocate Robert Reed if the question of expenses was worth considering, implying they should be waived.  Robert Reed told Sheriff Bell that for the first time the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers was instructed by Lothian Regional Council to pursue expenses as the council had changed its original policy not to pursue expenses.    I found this exceedingly discriminatory, given that I was unemployed.    Particularly so when considering that, for my part, I had not moved the court to "uphold my appeal 'with expenses'", minimal though they would be.  They were trying to win the case by intimidation.

(12)  -  I immediately realised, however, that the poll tax officer would be obliged to explain to some prying auditor why he was incapable of defending his own earlier decision, and why he found it necessary to hire the extravagant services of an advocate to try to justify why he arrived at his own earlier (dubious) decision.   In any event, to make me the first and perhaps only appellant up until then against whom expenses were sought, seemed like victimisation of the highest order.   I took as much comfort as the occasion warranted from the fact that Sheriff Bell was reluctant to consider the question of expenses.

13.06.90   -  The Sheriff Clerk Depute sent me a copy of Sheriff Bell's "Opinion" (i.e., written decision), dismissing my appeal.   He reserved, meantime, any question of expenses and appointed parties to be heard on 27 June 1990 at 9.45am within the Sheriff Consistorial Court, 16 North Bank Street, Edinburgh. LINK  It was signed and dated by Sheriff Bell, 13 June 1990.

(2)   -  Needless to say, in dismissing my appeal Sheriff Bell was at pains to disregard the Treaty of Union 1707 despite his previous averments in court that no person alive had the competence to do so.   What ought to be remembered at this early stage in the process is that the concept of justice and the integrity of the court system is the most important thing to be preserved.   This was blatantly overlooked then and for many years to come.   Justice was permanently out to lunch.

(3)  -  One of the excuses Sheriff Bell gave for refusing my appeal was that, in his opinion, "an appeal cannot competently be used to challenge the validity of the Act of Parliament under which it is authorised."

(4)  -  There is an irreconcilable paradox here.   The "Opinion" is in itself essentially self-contradictory.    What he is saying here is that if an appellant asserts that an Act (in this case the poll tax legislation) is contrary to constitutional law (i.e. the Treaty of Union) while at the same time seeking to rely on Section 16(2) of the same 1987 poll tax Act as the basis of his application, it must be deemed incompetent, because an appellant cannot make an application under a law he considers void.   The fact of the matter is that I was told by the Clerk of Court the specific law under which I must lodge my appeal.   Surely, therefore, it is a defective and deceitful argument to then claim I cannot competently appeal under a law that is the very one under which I was told I must appeal!    Furthermore, if the sheriff opines that an appeal cannot competently be used to challenge the validity of the Act of Parliament under which it is authorised, he is conceding the fact that the very court process involved with the hearing of my appeal is incompetent and invalid, thereby conceding that the 1987 poll tax Act is invalid.

(5)  -  Another argument generates from this.  If the court accepts an application under a law the appellant regards void, then the appellant puts his argument to the test and the sheriff then decides it is not competent for an appellant to lodge an application under a law he regards void, surely this must fall on the grounds that it has been assessed without being put to the test!   And surely it is irrelevant to the business of the court what the appellant regards as void.   Facts, not thoughts, are justiciable issues.    The only concern of the court is what the appellant can prove to be void beyond any reasonable doubt, or even on the balance of probabilities.

(6)  -  So the "Opinion" by the sheriff falls on its own merits and more appropriately seems to indicate he actually agrees with the principal argument of the appellant's case: that the 1987 poll tax legislation is in fact incompetent and void.    I aver, therefore, it is more logical to assume that it is not I but rather the poll tax officer Ian M Rogers and Sheriff Andrew Montgomery Bell who are challenging a valid Act of Parliament - i.e., the Treaty of Union 1707 - and they are doing so without any justiciable argument.

(7)  -  As touched upon above, I went to the Sheriff Court and was advised of the "proper" way to lodge an appeal - i.e., in the form of an Initial Writ, with four constituent parts: an Instance, a Crave or Craves, a Condescendence (Statement of Facts), and a Plea or Pleas-in-Law.   Armed with this advice I appealed under Section 16(2) of the 1987 poll tax Act.   So I was advised by the Sheriff Clerk Depute the precise Act under which I should lodge my appeal, only to have the same court turn the tables and tell me, in effect, that I was advised wrongly.    Am I to assume that the Sheriff Clerk Depute was in some measure in on the ploy to stymie my case in advance?    Even at this early stage the more you consider it the more you can foresee the quagmire into which certain figures in the extended legal system were sinking.

(8)   -  Sheriff Bell also stated: there are no averments [in my appeal] from which it can be inferred that the [1987] Act is contrary to any articles of the Treaty of Union."    However, only the subliterate would fail, or the politically corrupt would refuse, to recognise that I was not asking the court to determine whether or not the 1987 Act was contrary to any of the Articles contained in the Treaty of Union 1707.  I was calling on the court to simply accept the legality of the Treaty, thereby simultaneously accepting the poll tax was unequivocally contrary to Article XVIII. of the Treaty of Union.   I did not need a ruling, an "opinion", or a seal of approval from Sheriff Bell.   In fact, neither did I need any of these provisos from any court, the Lord Advocate, the Lord Chancellor, the Prime Minister, or from any parliamentary dogma to establish that fact.   Constitutional law unequivocally invalidated the poll tax in Scotland.   It was not open to conjecture or selective interpretation.   I got the 3-Rs at school and am quite capable of reading and understanding the plain and simple terms of Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union.

(9)  -  It may well be that it is not for any court to say that a Parliamentary enactment - the highest binding legal authority in Britain save the Treaty of Union - is void or illegal, but it is a more convincing argument, indeed averment, to say that if the courts are not competent to call into question an Act of Parliament, Parliament is similarly not competent to call into question a superior authority: the Treaty of Union1707.   Particularly if the later Act contravenes the superior earlier one.

(10)  -  Furthermore, just because the courts are not competent to say an Act of Parliament is illegal does not mean to say that the individual is similarly handicapped.   The individual requires the courts to simply recognise the mere existence and authority of the superior enactment to call upon that enactment to neutralise any ruling by any court or by Parliament that is unequivocally contrary thereto.   If, in such cases, the courts are restricted by Parliament, Parliament is equally restricted by the individual who reminds that chamber that it is contravening the Treaty of Union; or the even higher Scottish authority: the Scottish people!

(11)  -  The Scottish people - the ultimate Scottish authority notwithstanding the Treaty of Union - were perfectly within their rights to simply ignore the poll tax legislation because it was plainly unconstitutional, illegal and unenforceable.   The poll tax legislation not only compromised and negatived the very sovereignty of Parliament, but Parliament, in turn, compromised and negatived our courts.   Parliament committed a constructive fraud on our courts, then our courts joined Parliament in an obscene embrace.   To all intents and purposes, all that the Scottish people were required to do was simply pull rank on both the courts and Parliament, remind them of the Treaty of Union and of the ultimate authority, the Scottish people, and ignore the poll tax legislation, because Parliament had exceeded its legal powers, using them unlawfully to compromise and negative the people's courts.

(12)  -  On rushing the poll tax legislation through Parliament the Government acted ultra vires, or beyond its legal authority.   The Government assumed powers for itself that were not vested in the office of Government by the Treaty of Union, because Article XVIII of the Act states that laws or taxes are alterable in Scotland and not throughout the rest of the United Kingdom only if they are for evident utility (i.e., for benefit of the majority) of the people in Scotland.   But the poll tax was introduced in Scotland a year ahead of England, regardless of the fact this unfair tax, which benefited only a small minority - the most affluent people in society - was for evident "inutility" of the people in Scotland.   Moreover, the following year when the almost similar legislation was introduced in England, failure to comply was a criminal offence, while in Scotland it remained a civil wrong.  Taken separately or together, these considerations made the legislation in Scotland unequivocally contrary to and inconsistent with Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union, rendering it, as hereinbefore mentioned, unconstitutional, illegal and unenforceable in Scotland.

(13)  -  Even if the entire Commons insisted on the enforcement of the poll tax, every MP would be in breach of the Act that united the Parliaments of Scotland and England.   Parliament exists, and can legislate, only in terms of the Treaty that brought it into being.

(14) - Act -v- Law:  If you talk to a legal person, he will tell you that there is not much to choose between an Act and a Law.  This is because an Act is a law of the land.  We do not have to spend time trying to understand Law as it is simple and direct.  Law states what needs to be followed clearly and shortly (e.g., drunk driving is prohibited).  An Act is more descriptive as it contains all the necessary information to enforce a Law.  That is why you see people quoting from Acts especially when they are in a court.  In such a situation, one needs to have the complete set of information as a person can argue in favour of one side or the other.  This applies more specifically in civil cases, as with the poll tax Act.  However that Act indisputably breached the exclusively superior Act of Union.  For this particular argument, however, Act and Law are synonymous.  LINK

(15)  -  The poll tax was introduced in Scotland without a mandate and in contempt of the Scottish people who had overwhelmingly rejected it in democratic elections in Scotland.   There was a distinct absence of the social consensus necessary for the Government to introduce the poll tax in Scotland a year ahead of England.

(16)  -  The only valid argument that could challenge that is by arguing the Treaty of Union is itself invalid.  It can be reasonably accepted that at a General Election the Scottish people delegate only part of their sovereignty to their elected representatives - representatives as opposed to masters - because the British Parliament has never been sovereign over the affairs of the Scottish people; that sovereignty has been held by the Scottish people long before the Treaty of Union.  That argument is based on the lines that the Treaty of Union breaches both the Declaration of Arbroath 1320 and the Treaty of Edinburgh-Northampton 1328 because both stipulate that Scots be not held in subjection to any other monarch.  Accordingly, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is an illegal administration and Queen Elizabeth II is an illegal monarch of an illegally assembled Kingdom.  So, if the Treaty of Union is invalid there can be no Union.  Whichever argument one chooses the poll tax was still unequivocally invalid in Scotland.

(17)  -  Incidentally, Robert I, known as Robert the Bruce (1274-1329), King of Scotland (1306-29), seized the crown in 1306 and gradually extended his control over Scotland.  In 1314 he won effective independence from England by his victory at Bannockburn; but independence was not formally acknowledged by England until the Treaty of Edinburgh-Northampton in 1328, the year before he died.  So not only is the Scottish Parliament still legally in existence, therefore still legally the ultimate Scottish authority, but it is also still legally in its quondam parliamentary session because that session was simply adjourned.  It actually adjourned a little later in 1707, after the Treaty was signed, sealed and delivered by morally bankrupt Scots such as the then Lord Advocate John Dalrymple the 1st Earl of Stair, along with John Campbell the 2nd Duke of Argyll, and many other "nobles". LINK   Scotland, in effect, became Scotlandshire and "Scotland the Brave" became Scotland the Bribed! LINK  See a list of the traitors who sold out and the money they received. LINK

(18)  -  Be that as it may, if the Treaty of Union is legally binding, it follows that the poll tax breached Article XVIII of that Act, rendering it unenforceable in Scotland.

(19)  -  Parliament effectively abolished domestic rates without replacing it with a legitimate alternative in Scotland.  The fact that the poll tax legislation was repealed on 5 April 1993, only four years after its inception, bolsters that claim. LINK

(20)  -  In his written decision Sheriff Bell went on to state: "In any event I do not consider the provisions of the Act [Treaty of Union] can be regarded as such 'Law'", LINK   adding that the provisions of the 1987 Act are fairly clearly "Laws concerning public right Policy and Civil Government" and not "those concerning private right".  [Ed. ~ What a reversal of his intuitive judgement at the hearing, with no perceptible delay!  LINK  Who had got to him and corrupted him?]

(21)  -  Firstly, the Treaty of Union, like the poll tax, is an "Act".  That accepted, it follows that the Treaty is the sovereign or constitutional Act.  And Sheriff Bell's change of mind, suggesting that the poll tax did not concern "private right" is simply beyond comprehension.   Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union relates directly to taxes.  The poll tax was a tax enforced in Scotland and not throughout the rest of the United Kingdom, even though it was for evident inutility of the subjects in Scotland contrary to sovereign law.  It cannot be disputed that Article XVIII of the Treaty lays down constitutional provisos on not only Trade Custom and Excises but on all other laws.  See the next paragraph.

(22)  -  For the record, Article XVIII states verbatim: "That the "Laws" [Ed. ~ my emphasis.] concerning regulation of Trade Custom and such Excises to which Scotland is, by virtue of this Treaty, to be liable, be the same in Scotland, from and after the Union as in England and that all other Laws in use within the Kingdom of Scotland do after the Union and notwithstanding thereof remain in the same force as before (except such as are contrary to or inconsistent with this Treaty) but alterable by the Parliament of Great Britain with the difference betwixt the Laws concerning public right Policy and civil Government and those which concern private right Policy and Civil government may be made the same throughout the whole of the United Kingdom but that no alteration be made in Laws which concern private right Except for evident Utility of the subjects within Scotland."

(23)  -  The final clause is obviously the most important and most relevant one to this case.  I do not know why I have to labour this point because there is no doubt that anyone who disagrees with that fundamental point must have a vested interest in trying to remodel its clear-cut terms.

(24)  -  From his standpoint at the "hearing of appeal" when he fastened on to advocate Robert Reed's flimsy interpretation of the poll tax of being only a matter of public right policy and not private right (See 20.05.90 (6)), LINK  Sheriff Bell was now in agreement with him and had sinisterly changed his mind.  He was now saying something diametrically opposite to what he expressed to Robert Reed in court: that the poll tax was not a matter of both public right policy and private right, but of public right only.  Whoever had got to him in the interim, evidently pulling rank and corrupting him, certainly made him execute a breathtaking U-turn.   Irrespective, the unconvincing finding is complete nonsense.  The interpretation Sheriff Bell and myself advanced in court at the hearing of appeal was flawless, even if I say so myself.

(25)  -  Moreover, having previously agreed that no living person had the competence to overrule the Treaty of Union (See 28.05.90 (4)), LINK  Sheriff Bell merely declared that it was not competent for a sheriff to uphold a challenge to Parliament.  Of course he did not include that it was not competent for a sheriff to uphold a challenge to the supreme legislation of the United Kingdom Parliament: the Treaty of Union.

(26)  -  He also avoided responding to the invitation to simply acknowledge and accept the legality of the Treaty of Union, which has self-evident supremacy over Parliament.  Accordingly, he exceeded his legal powers in refusing my appeal.   And, as I mentioned hereinbefore, if the courts are restricted by Parliament in such cases, Parliament is equally restricted by the individual who reminds that chamber that it is contravening the Treaty of Union, the supreme law of the joint Parliaments.

(27)  -  As a member of the Scottish public, my legal powers were unrestricted by Parliament, but were, in effect, able to pull rank on Parliament.  This is strengthened by the fact that Parliament has since responded by officially invalidating the poll tax on 5 April 1993, less than four year since its inception. LINK  Its fleeting life span briought to bear the fact that it breached both the Treaty of Union and the Scottish people's sovereignty from the outset.

27.06.90   -  I appeared before Sheriff Andrew Bell in the Consistorial Court (as appointed on 13 June 1990) to discuss the question of expenses. LINK  Having made his written decision, and having dismissed my appeal, the sheriff was not convinced that expenses should be awarded against me.  As mentioned hereinbefore, he had suggested at the appeal that expenses should be waived, which is why he reserved until today his final decision on how to dispense with them.  But his desire to hear both parties' representations on the matter unfortunately did not include my exposé of his U-turn and his incomprehensible decision to refuse my appeal.  So not only did he refuse my appeal but he even refused to let me continue with my submissions soon after I began imparting them, as explained below.

(2)  -  In the preamble to the proceedings I ably described Sheriff Bell's change of heart over the public right/private right issue regarding the Treaty of Union. LINK This resulted in the man completely losing the plot.  There were a number of other consequences to be considered, but that was more than enough to be getting on with.  I noticed a head of steam building up in his cranium.  His face contorted like a man chewing a penny dainty, inciting him to let off an ineloquent tongue of flame.  Totally losing control, he threw a tantrum, awarded expenses in favour of the poll tax officer, then rushed from the courtroom in a rage, falling short to howl at the moon.  It was a stellar performance.  It was also a calming influence, serving as a reminder how not to conduct oneself in public.  That said, in a parallel world, say, where justice overrules law juggling, he would have been disengaged from his duties for exceeding the speed limit for court proceedings.  Usain Bolt's world breaking exploits were mere warm-up routines by comparison.

(3) - Although he had not given me the opportunity to finish explaining why expenses should not be awarded against me, I somehow felt self-satisfied that Sheriff Bell had at least all but acknowledged that I knew someone had got to him and  compelled obedience, leaving him no escape but to execute a breathtaking U-turn.

(4)  -  Needless to say, I was also prevented from exposing as excessive the expenditure incurred by Ian Rogers by engaging the services of an advocate (Robert Reed) to defend his own earlier decision.   And I was also prevented from submitting that if the poll tax officer was too incompetent to explain his own decision, surely even the most inexpensive or inexperienced solicitor could have read out his explanation for him.   Regardless, an advocate was employed by him and Robert Reed's expenses for that one earlier appearance in court was claimed to be £400, even though he fumbled his way throughout the proceedings, quoting past cases for supportive arguments that were non sequitur (had no relevance to anything that had been said beforehand, or indeed to anything remotely involved in the case); such as fishing rights and other hilariously ridiculous instances.  To be fair in some respect, it has to be said that Robert Reed was put in an unenviable position where he had no logical process to follow or no defensible case to state.  But what he did have was a corrupt legal covin singing from the same hymn sheet, as it were.  But £400 for such a shallow performance is extortion exemplified.   Particularly so considering his presence was superfluous in any event.   More superfluous even than the hire of a conventional mouthpiece.   Perhaps that is why Ian Rogers, the poll tax officer, welched on Robert Reed's fee and tried to pass the buck on to me.

(5)  -  For Ian Rogers' part, he chose to have no physical involvement in the proceedings, but it did not deter him from adding to the Account of Expenses a fee of £86.40 for his appearance in the public gallery, despite the fact that he would also be on wages from the council while he was in court.  These people are bereft of scruples.

(6)  -  However, the legal agent from Drummond Miller WS (not an advocate on this occasion), who appeared on behalf of Ian Rogers, incurred further unnecessary expenses for simply turning up and saying nothing, rather than Ian Rogers personally turning up to say nothing!   This revealed another case in point of the covin robbing the poor to expand the "gravy train" cavalcade.

(7)  -  On Sheriff Bell's untimely departure, I was left nonplussed in the well of the court.   So too was the poll tax officer's representative.   One other person, my brother Michael, sat at the back of the courtroom similarly nonplussed.  He was there to offer a mode of moral support and was flabbergasted with the shenanigans.

(8)  -  Even if Sheriff Bell had awarded expenses while making avizandum, instead of recalling both parties to court for the purpose, the still further expenses claimed by the poll tax officer for his law agent's presence in court would not have arisen.  Strange to say, even though the proceedings were particularly brief and Ian Rogers' agent was not required to say anything, another £52.50 was added to the Account of Expenses, along with another £45.00 and £18.00 for, respectively, the Taxation of Account and the Auditor's Fee.

(9)  -  As touched upon at (4) above, while the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers was performing duties for Lothian Regional Council, supposedly on behalf of the public, he was simultaneously claiming expenses against me for his unnecessary appearance in court at my appeal hearing.  He was already being vastly overpaid to act supposedly on their behalf, so by claiming wages against me for his superfluous appearance at the appeal while simultaneously collecting wages from the public purse for the selfsame duties, Ian Rogers was claiming twice for one needless engagement.  Extortion, I believe it is called.

(10)  -  Not only did he claim expenses while being overpaid by the public purse, but he also included in his account the £23.00 in respect of the Sheriff Clerk's Fee, despite the fact the Sheriff Clerk informed me at the time I lodged my appeal that the party who wins the case gets his fee reimbursed.  So why did he want me to also reimburse him?  This is further extortion - and make no mistake about it.

(11)  -  Be that as it may, this decision to hold me accountable for the poll tax officer, Ian M. Rogers' extravagant expenses by employing an advocate for his mouthpiece, kick-started the subsequent stage management of the bankruptcy farce and ensured the unduly appointed creditor/debtor scenario would continue relentlessly.   Maggie Thatcher's Tory Government had restructured the legal and judicial system to fit into its political ambitions. LINK

05.07.90   -  I wrote a letter of complaint and Note of Appeal to the Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson QC about Sheriff Andrew Bell's decision to refuse my appeal, addressing all the relevant points of my grievance, informing him that I was feeling rather indignant about Sheriff Bell's breathtaking U-turn on the public right/private right argument.

05.07.90  -  The same day Drummond Miller WS, Agents for the poll tax officer Ian Rogers, sent me a letter, enclosing a copy of the Account of Expenses they were lodging with a view to having the Account for Ian Rogers taxed by the Sheriff Court Auditor. "In due course," the letter said, "you will be informed of the date, time and 'place' [my emphasis] of the taxation."  LINK

(2)  -  The Account of Expenses and Outlays to be submitted for taxation amounted to the extortionate amount of £924.63. This is well below the amount for which a person can now be deemed bankrupt. (The minimum amount for which someone can be made bankrupt was actually raised to £1,500 a couple of months after I was declared bankrupt.)  Had that been the limit then the bankruptcy process could not have been activated.

13.07.90   -  I received a reply from the Sheriff Clerk's Office advising me there was no appeal to the Sheriff Principal permissible against Sheriff Bell's decision but my letter would be treated as a Note of Appeal to the Court of Session pursuant to Section 29(2) of the Abolition of Domestic Rates (Scotland) 1987 [the poll tax Act], and the Process would be transmitted to that court that day.  To this day my appeal has still not been heard in the Court of Session.  This did not stop the activation of other "dependent" court processes that were required to rely on the outcome of that Note of Appeal in the Court of Session.

24.07.90   -  I attended an appointment at 4.00pm with Randolph Murray, solicitor with Marshall Henderson & Whyte, 15 Stafford Street, Edinburgh EH3 7BU.  It lasted until 5.15pm.   As mentioned at 18.05.90, Randolph Murray had represented several members of CAP-T.  As coincidence would have it, Randolph Murray received his (adverse) decision this selfsame day from the Court of Session in respect of the four appellants he represented.   He gave me a copy of the decision of the Lord President Lord Hope, and Lords Grieve and Kirkwood.

(2)  -  Randolph Murray told me he would apply for a sist of process (postponement) on my behalf on the grounds he was applying for legal aid.   This application was the principal reason I arranged the appointment with Randolph Murray.

(3)  -  It soon became very apparent to me that, even though he was representing four other clients, the terms of the appeal were laid down entirely at his own discretion.   And although that discretion was largely competent, it did not deliver the coup de grâce and invite the court to simply acknowledge and accept the legality and constitutionality of the Treaty of Union 1707.   Nor did he suggest that, as a member of the public, he was pulling rank on the court and Parliament for exceeding their legal powers.   Not that I would expect a lawyer to have the honour to jeopardise his affiliation with the merry men in the Law Society and get disbarred for rising above their gutter level of scruples.   But, as mentioned hereinbefore, that was all he needed to do to win his argument because Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union is self-explanatory and does not confer sufficient powers on Parliament to enact laws that are contrary to the terms laid out in the Treaty of Union.

(4)  -  When Randolph Murray read the perhaps strongly worded but sincerely justifiable terms of my appeal, he kept prompting me to proceed more or less along the same lines as his appeal, despite the fact he had just lost his!   He did not seem to have the appetite to invite the court to accept the legality and constitutionality of the Treaty of Union and declare the poll tax legislation illegal in Scotland.

(5) - That said, I admired everyone who resisted the poll tax for whatever reason.  It is admirable and honourable for someone to take the stance when a law is wrong to not only say so, but feel a duty to resist it.  With regard to the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc (Scotland) Act 1987, one only had to point it out to the judiciary that it was illegal in Scotland.  Unfortunately, the legal brethren closed ranks and left the pubic to play pinball with their own minds, prisoners of conscience, if you like, and decide if pursuing righteousness in the theatre of the court is worth the extensive encumbrance on their health and wealth, visited on them by a heinously cunning, lawless subterfuge in a monument of civil court practice in which every difficulty, every contingency, every masterful fiction, every form of procedure known to the court, is represented to the court over and over again; in a cause that should not have existed in the first place had the courts not been politicised.

(6)  -  Realising his discomfort, I suggested he merely applies for legal aid on my behalf and once that hurdle was overcome I would take over and present my own case in my own terms and he need not concern himself further.

(7)  -  Randolph Murray even tried to put me off by suggesting that I had very little chance of being granted legal aid.    I told him that if legal aid was refused, my case would be all the more effective when I complained to the European Commission of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.   He reluctantly saw my point.

(8)  -  He still persisted but after further attempts to make me moderate the terms of my appeal, he said, rather meekly: "I'm fifth division stuff compared with these guys [referring to the powers that be in the Court of Session]."

(9)  -  I was utterly flabbergasted, wondering how he had the shamelessness to represent other people while harbouring an attitude like that, even though he believed in the case he was presenting.    I suppressed my consternation because I realised that Randolph Murray was my only hope of obtaining legal aid.   (Incidentally, before contacting Randolph Murray, one of the lawyers I phoned with a view to securing legal aid was Kenny MacAskill - who would become an MSP for the Scottish National Party and the Scottish Government's Cabinet Secretary for Justice.   Kenny told me to contact Randolph Murray as he was the only lawyer representing poll tax dissenters.  Strange, but true - only one he told me!)

(10)  -  I left Randolph Murray's office at 5.15pm, having spent an hour and fifteen minutes there.   I mused about how the only solicitor prepared to stick his neck out in appeals against the poll tax considers himself "fifth division stuff" and is not really sticking his neck out at all but is playing within subservient parameters that restrict flexibility, stifle natural law, and prevent a case from being put fairly to the court.

(11)  -  In a contrary way, I felt a little self-satisfied because my earlier suspicions about a conspiracy of political corruption in our courts were rapidly proving to be precise.   Of course you can't fight a conspiracy if you say it doesn't exist.  The first requirement is to recognise its existence.   Anyone who refuses to accept the deep-rooted and far-reaching conspiracies in society will never begin to understand the rudiments of the society he lives in.   Particularly the behaviour of those in the upper echelons of society who largely control the unwitting.

31.07.90   -  At 4.30pm exactly one week later, Randolph Murray phoned me from, he said, the Supreme Courts in Parliament Square.   He anxiously told me that, not only would he not be submitting an application for a sist of process on the grounds that I was applying for legal aid, but he had just been advised to have nothing more to do with my case, and that if he did not represent me, all expenses incurred by his other four clients from CAP-T would be waived.   It had all the charitable peculiarities of the Hooded Claw coming to the rescue of Penelope Pitstop.

(2)  -  It is worth remembering at this point that the expenses incurred by Mr Murray's CAP-T clients were for appeals already lost in the Court of Session: quite a considerable sum of money compared to the comparatively paltry sum of money being extorted from me by the Sheriff Court in respect of the self-imposed grandiose expenses of the poll tax officer, Ian M Rogers.   (Through time the gravy-train-riders would ensure the expenses spiralled out of control.)   The old maxim came to the fore: "Laws are like cobwebs; they catch small flies but allow hornets to break through."

(3)  -  This confirms that the expenses being extorted from me for Ian Rogers' extravagant outlays was never really an issue; the money factor was but a front.   The primary reason for pursuing the sham debt was precisely to teach a member of the public a lesson for having the gall to expose the illegality in Scotland of the and to further reveal all the corruption - political and criminal - of certain contemptible figures in the legal covin.

(4)  -  Nevertheless, I told Randolph Murray I fully understood his predicament and accepted the position in which he now found himself.   In a still almost panic-stricken voice he wished me the best of luck, which I appreciated because I think he meant it.  That said, I was still in the unenviable position of being ring-fenced by the legal establishment and left to howl at the moon in isolation.

(5)  -  That was the last I heard from Randolph Murray.   I know he was taking his CAP-T's case to the European Commission of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, but I have no idea how he faired.   Judging by the watered down, ineffective terms he lodged for CAP-T in the Court of Session, I must assume the appeal to Europe failed.

29.04.91   -  A summary warrant was granted against me by Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole - in my absence and without intimation - for so-called arrears of the invalid poll tax.

22.05.91   -  I wrote a letter of complaint to Sheriff Poole, informing her, inter alia, that I still awaited a date of hearing for my appeal to the Court of Session against the earlier refusal of my appeal by Sheriff Andrew Montgomery Bell. LINK

24.05.91  -  Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah B Armstrong wrote to me on behalf of Sheriff Poole, informing me that she "cannot enter into any correspondence with parties to an action in the Court [of Session]".LINK

18.11.91   -  Unbeknown to me at this time, Lothian Regional Council applied to the Sheriff Court for a summary warrant against me in respect of so-called arrears of the invalid poll tax.

20.11.91   -  A summary warrant was railroaded through the Sheriff Court by Sheriff Peter G B McNeill on a fast track in my absence and without intimation. That is to say, I was not given the opportunity to appear in court to oppose it, which I assuredly would have done successfully.

07.04.92  -  I wrote to the Sheriff Clerk Depute, asking who underhandedly applied for the summary warrant and who granted it without first giving me the opportunity to appear in court to oppose it.

15.04.92  -  In a reply I was informed it was Sheriff Peter G B McNeill who granted the summary warrant.

16.04.92  -  I wrote to Sheriff McNeill, inviting him to revoke the summary warrant, since granting it was ultra vires, or beyond his legal authority as he granted it in my absence and without intimation.   He did not reply.   Obviously the issues at hand were too important to be interfered with by the vagaries of the law.

05.05.92  -  I wrote again to Sheriff McNeill, inviting him again to revoke the summary warrant for the same reasons.   Again he did not reply.

22.05.92  -  I wrote a letter of complaint to the Lord Advocate Alan Rodger, about the failure of Sheriff Peter McNeill to respond to my letters.   (Alan Rodger was the recently appointed Lord Advocate, who simultaneously became a life peer as Baron Rodger of Earlsferry.   In 1995, he would become a judge of the High Court of Justiciary and the Court of Session, rising just one year later to Lord Justice General and Lord President of the Court of Session.)   A copy of my letter was sent by the Scottish Courts Administration to the Sheriff Clerk's Office and although I received evasive responses from that office on 1st June, 8 June, 22 June and 3 July 1992, no one attempted to explain why I was not permitted the opportunity to oppose the application for a summary warrant, in person, in court.   I eventually received a letter from someone in the Scottish Courts Administration, writing on behalf of the Lord Advocate Alan Rodger, but nothing relevant was provided.  To this day I have still not received a pertinent reply to these specific points regarding Sheriff McNeill.

16.07.92   -  I received a notice to appear in the Sheriff Court on 20 July 1992 inviting me, if I wished, to oppose a Motion and Account of Expenses over the (extravagant) expenses for the poll tax officer Ian Rogers engaging the services of an advocate mouthpiece.   I had only four days notice to appear in court for this hearing, but, and here's the rub, I was not told in which of the many Sheriff Courts the proceedings would take place.   Thus, I was stymied from opposing the Motion.   This was in spite of the fact that Drummond Miller WS, agents for the poll tax officer, sent me a letter on 5 July 1990 advising me that I would be informed of the date, time and "place" of the taxation.   (At that time there were annexes of the Sheriff Court in multifarious buildings in Edinburgh.   They would eventually all be housed together in the new building in Chambers Street, which opened in September 1994.)

(2)  -  I wrote today to both the Sheriff Court and to Drummond Miller WS, explaining my predicament as laid out in the previous paragraph.   I did not receive a response.    Had I been afforded the opportunity to appear in court in person, my opposition would have been on the original lines of my appeal before Sheriff Andrew Bell, and also on the lines that my further appeal against Sheriff Bell's decision, which the Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson QC had transmitted to the Court of Session on 13 July 1990 - and which was still to be heard. LINK  I would have had the added advantage of exposing Sheriff Bell's breathtaking U-turn on the public right/private right issue pertaining to Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union 1707, and his unrehearsed, untimely, tantrum throwing departure from the Consistorial Court, where I was ordained to appear on 27 June 1990 to discuss whether or not expenses ought to be waived. LINK

20.07.92   -  The non licit proceedings regarding the Motion and Account of Expenses was railroaded through the court by, and not surprisingly, Sheriff Peter McNeill.   Again my opposition to the motion, revealing the illegalities, would have been an embarrassment, otherwise I would not have been stymied.

(2)  -  Sheriff McNeill decreed (i.e., railroaded through the court), in my absence and without intimation, that I pay the poll tax officer Ian Rogers the sum of £948.93 in respect of court and other expenses arising from his engagement of the services of an advocate to defend his own earlier decision following on my appeal to him in the former council offices at 30-31 Queen Street, Edinburgh on Monday, 18 December 1989. LINK

27.11.92   -  This was the date marked down as the official "Date of Sequestration".   This clarifies that the show hearing that was yet to come, supposedly to decide whether or not sequestration should be awarded, was formulated precisely to officially rubberstamp that sham.

21.12.92   -  This is the official date for the "hearing" of the sequestration proceedings.   The official "Date of Sequestration" was, unknown to me at the time, almost four weeks earlier.   In any event, I was ordained to appear in Bumbledom to "show cause why sequestration should not be awarded".   Through prolonged contact I was acquiring a reference for the law.

(2)  -  Be that as it may, I went to the court to ask for justice not to ask for generosity.   I went to invoke the rule of law but was confronted with legal backsliding and political cowardice on a large scale.

(3)  -  Since the official date of sequestration is recorded as 27 November 1992, this hearing was obviously just a pretentious presentation to cover up the fact that the decision had already been taken in furtive chambers away from the public eye. LINK

(4)  -  In his eagerness to bulldoze my infallible case, sequestration was awarded in court by Sheriff McNeill while ignoring four crucial factors: (a) Concealed from me at the time was the stern truth that the sequestration had already been decreed on 27 Niovember 1992 and this hearing was just for the convenience of court records, suggesting that the due process of law had been correctly followed; (b) The crucial proviso contained in the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 Section 11(1) which states; "This oath must be sworn by the creditor or a person authorised to act on his behalf before a person entitled to administer the oath, e.g. in the UK a Notary Public (usually a Solicitor) or a Justice of the Peace."   The "Oath by Creditor" presented in court, a copy with which I was supplied, along with other missives, was "unsigned".   This should have rendered the proceedings non licit;  (c)  Sheriff McNeill refused to allow me the opportunity to "show cause why sequestration should not be awarded", contrary to Section 12(2) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985; and (d) He failed to address the fact that both the Motion and Account of Expenses and the present bankruptcy hearing were steamrollered over by him while I had allowed my appeal against the decision of Sheriff Andrew Bell lie to the Court of Session - sent there by the Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson QC - pursuant to Section 29(2) of the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc (Scotland) Act 1987. LINK

(5)  -  It was becoming very apparent to me that laws may be statutory but they are certainly not mandatory.  So it has to be asked: "Who decides if and when the law should not be taken in its literal sense?"  Keep in mind that when a sheriff or judge departs from the letter of the law he becomes a lawbreaker.

(6)  -  The case before Sheriff Bell that created the phoney debt was in respect of the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers' extravagant engagement of the services of an advocate-mouthpiece to explain away Ian Rogers' own earlier refusal of my original appeal in his office on 18 December 1989 against my name being entered in his register for liability to pay the invalid poll tax. LINK The case before Sheriff Bell was therefore just an intermediate tribunal, yet Sheriff McNeill railroaded the bankruptcy through while I was awaiting a date for a hearing of appeal in the Court of Session against the decision of Sheriff Bell.

(7)  -  When asked by Sheriff McNeill if I could show cause why sequestration should not be awarded, I started to read out to him my preprepared statement.  Sheriff McNeill immediately cut me off, saying: "I'm not listening to this."  He turned his attention to the female solicitor of Drummond Miller WS and asked her what she had to say.  She merely said: "Since Mr Burns has not shown cause why sequestration should not be awarded, it should therefore be awarded."  I quickly and emphatically rejoined: "The reason I have not shown cause is precisely because he [I pointed a forceful finger at Sheriff McNeill] would not allow me to show cause."   Sheriff McNeill quickly decerned that sequestration was awarded, hung his head as if in shame and stared fixedly down at his papers on the bench in front of him.  The solicitor hastily dispatched her papers into her briefcase and departed from the well of the court at full tilt, leaving me alone in front of Sheriff McNeill.  I had been forced to enter the contest with not one but two hands tied behind my back.  Such actions from the sheriff constitute a flagrant abuse of power.  

(8)   -  I turned to Sheriff McNeill and with similar emphasis accused him and his court of being corrupt.  I repeated the accusation but still he refused to respond, sullenly keeping his defective vision glued down to the paper "bumf" piled below his bowed head, as if in an expression of submission.  He seemed visibly overburdened by the proceedings of which he ought to have been in control.  His train of indecision was speechlessly at home with him.  This was not only individual paralysis, this was institutional paralysis.  There was nothing left for me to do but, though disgruntled, proudly and slowly leave the lawyer-filled courtroom.  On departing I addressed them all in clear verbal expression, once again repeating my accusation that the court proceedings were corrupt.  All the lawyers sat silently nonplussed, as if refusing to acknowledge the accusations that defied court etiquette, ridiculed their sacred precinct and embarrassed the system to which they must kowtow.  What many people unfortunately do not realise is that judges and courts are alike open to criticism, and if reasonable argument or expostulation is offered against any judicial act as contrary to law or the public good, no court could or should treat it as contempt of court.  Which is why Sheriff McNeill did not accuse me of contempt of court.

31.12.92   -  Graham Ritchie, Chartered Accountant with Ernst & Young, presently at 10 George Street, Edinburgh, sent me a letter illustrating that he was under the misapprehension that the sequestration was valid and that certain obligations had been conferred on him as a legitimate interim trustee of my so-called estate, even though the stage-managed process was illicit and an impediment to natural justice.

(2)  -  He advised me that I was required under Section 2 of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 to provide him within seven days of the receipt of his letter with a list of my assets and liabilities.

11.01.93   -  I replied to Graham Ritchie, enclosing a copy of the unsigned Oath by Creditor to bring to his notice that since that crucial proviso was not conformed with, the bankruptcy was invalid under Section 11(1) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985.   I also explained that I was not allowed by Sheriff McNeill to "show cause why the sequestration should not be awarded", which also contravenes the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act at Section 12(2).

(2)  -  Moreover, I explained that three times during the so-called hearing I accused the court of political corruption and Sheriff McNeill neither denied it, nor warned me that I could be held in contempt of court.  [I was hoping that I would be held in contempt so to have another day in court to repeat the accusation and substantiate its accordance with fact.]

(3)  -  I informed Graham Ritchie that I had an appeal pending in the Court of Session against the decision by Sheriff Bell in the earlier Sheriff Court appeal, mentioning also how Sheriff Bell compassed a breathtaking U-turn while making avizandum.

(4)  -  Graham Ritchie, therefore, was left in no doubt about the situation.

29.01.93  -  Graham Ritchie wrote to me, claiming: "I have no choice but to proceed with the administration of your sequestration."   By threatening me with a reminder that it was an offence under the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 if I fail to deliver to him within seven days of his original request a list of my assets and liabilities, he was blatantly disregarding the fact that the stage-managed sequestration was invalid and had been railroaded through the court on a fast track illegally.

02.02.93   -  I wrote back informing him I was refusing to comply with his request, and that the only assets I had was my soiled underwear and there was no way he would lay his filthy lawless hands on them.

04.02.93  -  Graham Ritchie reiterated his shallow comment that "it is an offence under the Act [i.e., the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985] to fail to provide the list of assets and liabilities 'without reasonable excuse' [my emphasis]."

(2)  -  It was becoming apparent that he was willingly acquiescing in all the foregoing political and/or criminal corruption because not only had I given him a "reasonable excuse", I had given him rock solid "reasons" for not complying.

08.02.93   -  In order that there could be no dubiety over any of Graham Ritchie's future acquiescence, or otherwise, in the political corruption, I wrote to him again, enclosing a summary of my history (i.e., five A-4 pages, single spacing) in exposing the invalidity in Scotland of the poll tax and the extent of the disturbing political corruption in maintaining the illegal tax, and how the bankruptcy scenario was orchestrated.   I scornfully repeated the extent of my assets, as mentioned above in my letter of 2 February 1993. LINK

11.02.93   -  For the first time Graham Ritchie acknowledged in a letter the fact that I had referred him to the unsigned "Oath by Creditor".   However, even though I had sent him a copy of the unsigned "Oath", he preferred to accept the word of Fergus Christie and Robbie Burnett, solicitors and partners with Drummond Miller WS, who had a vested interest in lying about the unsigned "Oath", and for belatedly and illegally signing it and notarising it at a later date. LINK  They tried to close the door after the horse had bolted, so to speak.   Instead of pestering me, Graham Ritchie ought to have reported Fergus Christie and Robbie Burnett to the procurator fiscal for "uttering a false instrument", as it is known in legal parlance.

(2)  -  Graham Ritchie also stated: "I have now requested from you on three occasions a list of your assets and liabilities in the prescribed form and this has you have declined to do.   Unless I receive this by return, I will be obliged to seek the instructions of the Accountant in Bankruptcy regarding a court order to require you to comply with your duties under the Act."   He obviously did not bother to consider the rather inconvenient evidence that I was sequestrated illegally.

(3)  -  All told, what kind of madness was this, I thought, coming from a human being who was created imago viva Dei (in the living image of God), by virtue of his creative power of reason, but here was I confronted with a comparatively well-educated man, mimicking an inferior species of animal life?   Every individual must hold himself responsible for doing the right thing, but Graham Ritchie seemed to be simply responding to the big stick of a more intelligent (how ever corrupt) species, without the mind to understand his real responsibility in life and to question just how corrupt that more intelligent species actually was.

13.02.93  -  I wrote to Graham Ritchie asking him to re-read my letter of 8 February 1993 LINK and the copy of the summary of my history in exposing the invalidity in Scotland of the poll tax and the extent of the disturbing political corruption that engineered the bankruptcy scenario, re-emphasising that the bankruptcy was railroaded through while I still had an appeal pending in the Court of Session LINK against the decision of Sheriff Andrew Bell in my earlier appeal in the lower Sheriff Court. LINK

(2)  - When put to him,  Graham Ritchie had trouble accepting the words of the great Scottish bard, Rabbie Burns: "Facts are chiels that winna ding and downa be disputed!"

23.02.93  -  In the Sheriff Court an illegal "Act and Warrant" was granted to appoint Graham Ritchie permanent trustee (as opposed to interim trustee) in the so-called whole estate wherever situated of William Burns.

15.03.93  -  Graham Ritchie underhandedly wrote a letter to my wife with the threat that it was his intention to instruct the sale of the family home (in reference to the stage-managed, invalid sequestration).   He stated that if she was unwilling to consent to the sale of the property, he would apply to the court for its authority to sell.

17.03.93  -  I wrote to Graham Ritchie on behalf of my wife (who is totally apolitical and had no interest whatsoever in my fight to expose the illegality of the poll tax), informing him that, I, personally, attend to all official letters in my house in order to protect my family from being subjected to indecent endearments from racketeers such as him.

(2)  -  So that there could be no uncertainty over Graham Ritchie's continuing acquiescence in the political corruption , I again enclosed a copy of a summary of my history in exposing the invalidity in Scotland of the poll tax.   I included the extent of the disturbing chain of events that steamrollered over the bankruptcy process.

05.04.93   -  The poll tax officer, Ian Rogers left the employment of the council as the poll tax was finally officially invalidated.  His job was made redundant.  Which is to say, the extortionate expenses incurred by one individual is his personal responsibility.  That responsibility can not be passed on to another individual.  Similarly, the poll tax officer's job can not be passed on to a successor employee because, if the job was made redundant, no-one can replace a nonexistent job; therefore no successor would-be creditor exists.  Even if I had been deemed a debtor through a legitimate process, it stands to reason that the same criterion applies.  I should have been disembarrassed of the entire farcical action.  The legal process was in turmoil.  Only flagrant desertion of probity and total disrespect for the law could save the legal mechanics from digging a hole ever deeper for themselves.

(2)  -  What is more, the appeal I let lie to the Court of Session against the earlier decision of Sheriff Bell on 13 June 1990 LINK could not now be heard under legislation that ceased to exist, the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc (Scotland) Act 1987.  It follows, therefore, that I must be given the benefit of the doubt that I would have won my appeal in the Court of Session, or at least would not have lost it.  This, in turn, makes the proceedings two-and-a-half years later to declare me bankrupt an even bigger farce.

13.04.93  -  Graham Ritchie, ignoring the fact that the so-called creditor ceased to exist eight days earlier, wrote again, threatening this time that if my wife did not consent to the sale of the property, he would be obliged to take action for division and sale in the Court of Session.  He was now undoubtedly an unconscionable part of the obsessive project to "defeat poll tax dissenters at any cost", and would embark on an orgy of litigation, regardless of the unmistakable clarity of who was operating within the law and who was driving a coach and horses through the law.

(2)  -  He was still lying about the "Oath by Creditor" being properly administered, even though I had twice previously sent him a copy of the original unsigned "Oath", the one that was produced to Sheriff McNeill at the "hearing" of the bankruptcy on 21 December 1992 by the female solicitor from Drummond Miller WS. LINK

22.04.93   -  I wrote to Graham Ritchie informing him that the political corruption to which I had been subjected in our courts and elsewhere precedes, and indeed supersedes, any illegal and corrupt decision subsequently made thereof.

(2)  -  I reminded him again about the "Oath by Creditor", and also of my 'assets' as mentioned above on 2 and 8 February 1993. LINK

05.05.94   -  Still ignoring the reality of the matter, Graham Ritchie wrote asking me to complete a form, listing my assets and liabilities, and to attend his office at 10.00am on Monday, 16 May 1994.   Failure to comply, he said, would lead him to apply to the sheriff for an order for my compliance.  He added: "Should you fail to obtemper the sheriff's order, a report will be submitted to the Crown Office."

(2)  -  This was the first correspondence I had received from Graham Ritchie for over a year.

12.05.94  -  I advised Graham Ritchie by post that he would never catch me "obtempering" to politically corrupt gangsters, but only to upright people who take pride in administering the law honestly.

20.05.94   -  Graham Ritchie acknowledged receipt of that letter and advised me he had reported "this offence" to the Accountant in Bankruptcy.

(2)  -  He also said he had instructed his solicitor to raise an action against me in the Sheriff Court for possession of my property in order that the claims of my (pretended) creditors might be satisfied.

(3)  -  It must be remembered that the only creditor, the poll tax officer, no longer existed, and had not existed since 5 April 1993. LINK

22.05.94  -  I wrote to Graham Ritchie, telling him, inter alia: "I look forward with great enthusiasm at being afforded the opportunity to expose in the Sheriff Court all the miscreants who are party to the deep-rooted political corruption and lawlessness of which I have been the victim since 1988 as a result of the imposition of the illegal poll tax." LINK

09.06.94  -  In a letter, Graham Ritchie acknowledged receipt of my communication of 22 May 1994 and said: "I have instructed my solicitor to raise proceedings against you in the Court of Session for possession of your property in satisfaction of your debts.   The papers will be served on you in due course."

13.06.94  -  In a reply I said: "I trust you will produce the 'Oath by Creditor' in court so that I can expose your criminality immediately without having to go over the track record of all the racketeers with whom I have so far confronted."

15.09.94  -  It was ordained in the Sheriff Court that I take every practicable step to cooperate with the (purported) Permanent Trustee, and that a warrant was granted to him to serve a copy of the "Note and Deliverance" under certification that if I fail to comply I may be guilty of an offence.

11.10.94   -  Almost two years after the bankruptcy was railroaded through the court, Graham Ritchie produced a falsely uttered "Oath by Creditor" dated 18 November 1992; however, the fact remains that the original "Oath by Creditor" before the court on 21 December 1992 remains unsigned. LINK

(2)  -  Robbie Burnett and Fergus Christie are two of the partners in Drummond Miller WS, the agents for the poll tax officer, so had a vested interest in producing a belatedly signed "Oath by Creditor" to give it an appearance of legality.    As mentioned at 11 February 1993 , however, Fergus Christie and Robbie Burnett ought to have been reported to the procurator fiscal for "uttering a false instrument". LINK

17.10.94  -  Lorna Sibbald of Dorman Jeffrey & Co Solicitors, the latest recruits to the gravy train, wrote to me asking me to attend Graham Ritchie's office in terms of a Certified Copy Interlocutor.   She was of the misconception that if I failed to attend I may be guilty of an offence.

18.10.94  -  I wrote to Dorman Jeffrey & Co., explaining how the sequestration was invalid  and that I would look forward to exposing in the Sheriff Court all the miscreants who are party to the deep-rooted political corruption and lawlessness of which I have been made victim since 1988 due to the imposition of the illegal poll tax in Scotland.

23.11.94   -  Dorman Jeffrey & Co., informed me by letter that, "We have now reported you to the Accountant in Bankruptcy.  You may now be charged by the police."

06.12.94   -  Citations arrived informing me that my wife and I have until 29 December 1994 to lodge a defence against the (bogus) permanent trustee, Graham Ritchie pursuing the sale of the family home to enforce payment of the pretended debt.

16.12.94  -  The same day, Sheriff Clerk Depute Alan Nicol, assigned 15 March 1995 as a diet for an Options Hearing within the Sheriff Court House, 27 Chambers Street, Edinburgh.   He appointed 12 January 1995 as the date by which defences must be lodged, and required that all adjustments of pleadings by parties to be completed by 1st March 1995. LINK

22.12.94   -  The front page lead in the Edinburgh Evening News revealed that as much as £120 million could be written off in Lothian for what it called "poll tax debt", yet I was being oppressively pursued for the comparatively paltry and phoney debt of less than one thousand pounds for arguing my case about the invalidity of the poll tax through the proper channels, as opposed to the masses who simply refused to pay without appealing against the legislation - which of course they were fully entitled to do in any event since the poll tax was unquestionable invalid in Scotland.

28.12.94  -  I posted my defence to the Sheriff Court against Graham Ritchie's action to force the sale of the family home.

30.12.94  -  My defence was returned from the Sheriff Court as a fee of £42.00 was required.

31.12.94   -  I personally delivered my defence to the new Sheriff Court , dropping it into the court's exclusive postbox in Chambers Street, Edinburgh. LINK  I enclosed the £42.00 demanded for the Sheriff Clerk's fee.

02.02.95  -  I posted a copy of Adjustments for my Defence in the case in which the pursuer, Graham Ritchie was trying to force the sale of the family home for the pretended debt of the now nonexistent (pseudo) creditor.  I also hand posted a copy to the Sheriff Clerk by way of the Sheriff Court's personal postbox.  The pursuer had four Pleas-in-Law.

16.02.95  -  Two police officers left a card at my house with instructions to phone them when I arrived home.  I phoned them and arranged to meet them the next day at 2.00pm in Drylaw Police Station, Ferry Road, Edinburgh.

17.02.95   -  I met DC John Crawford and DC Sandy Forrest in Drylaw Police Station at 2.00pm as arranged and was formally charged under Section 64(2) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 of failing without reasonable excuse to deliver to the interim trustee a list of assets and liabilities, "on the instructions", they told me, "of the then Lord Advocate, Lord Rodger of Earlsferry".

01.03.95   -  I sent a copy of my Defence in the civil case to the Sheriff Court, which contained 58 Craves and 58 Pleas-in-Law.

15.03.95   -  Sheriff Peter McNeill presided over the Options Hearing in the Sheriff Court.   I had by that time forgotten what Sheriff McNeill looked like and did not find out until a later date that it was he who was on the bench, otherwise I would have been sufficiently equipped for dealing with the challenge I faced, without hesitation.

(2)   -  A female solicitor sinisterly claimed she was acting on behalf of both the pursuer and the second defender (my wife).   If that is not a conflict of interest I, for one, do not know what is.   Almost equally sinister was that she proposed that the "Options Hearing" be put back to give the pursuer adequate time to study my Defence as it had 58 Craves and 58 Pleas-in-Law.

(3)  -  Since Dorman Jeffrey & Co. were, by this time, time-barred from making further amendments and additions to any "Note of Adjustments", a postponement was the ideal ploy to change the goalposts, so to speak, and create more leeway to lodge an additional crucial and threatening submission: the decisive one to try to prevent my entire Defence from being remitted to probation (i.e., heard in court).

(4)  -  I opposed the motion on the grounds that agents for the pursuer already had more than ample time to study my Defence, given that they were in possession of a copy of it for a full two weeks.   They had also been in possession of all the facts for months, as submitted in my Condescendence.   Not forgetting that the pursuer had himself been aware for years of the invalid stage management of the sequestration and, just as importantly, the would-be creditor ceased to exist as a creditor 23 months earlier. LINK

(5)  -  The sheriff, whom I had not realised was Sheriff Peter McNeill, asked me with a flavour of patronising coercion, whether I thought a postponement was unreasonable, given the exceptionally large number of Craves and Pleas-in Law in my Defence.   Regrettably, I conceded the point; and I did so for four reasons: (1) I felt a slight sense of pressure by the way he patronisingly put the question; (2) I was unaware of the number of Craves and Pleas-in-Law that were supposed to be an "exceptionally large number"; (3) I did not know what period of time is generally regarded, in court parlance, as reasonable for a plaintiff to consider a defence properly; and (4) I did not know it was Sheriff McNeill who was coercing me.

(6)  -  Nevertheless, Sheriff McNeill, having heard parties' solicitors and myself personally, continued the Options Hearing until 12 April 1995. LINK

(7)  -  Incidentally, Plea-in-Law No. 2 stated: "There being no circumstances to justify refusal or postponement of the [Sheriff] Court's authority in terms of Section 40(2) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, decree should be granted as first craved."

21.03.95  -  The pursuer moved the court to remit the Cause to the Court of Session on the basis of the difficulty of the Cause and its importance to the parties.  The Sheriff Court assigned 12 April 1995 as a diet to hear the pursuer's motion. LINK

(2)  -  The critical factor here is twofold: (1) Had the pursuer not moved for a postponement, with the spurious excuse that there were an exceptionally large number of Craves and Pleas-in-Law to be considered, this motion to remit the Cause to the Court of Session would never have transpired, therefore it would never have been assigned a hearing diet, and, therefore, they would not have had the chance to ask for a remit to the Court of Session; and (2) This was a complete reversal of the pursuer's plea a mere six days earlier, that "there were no circumstances to justify refusal or postponement of the [Sheriff] Court's authority ... ."

(3)  -  By moving for a remit, however, he was actually admitting that his earlier motion to Sheriff McNeill was just a ploy to buy time.   He was also now saying that there were in fact "circumstances to justify refusal or postponement of the Sheriff Court's authority", otherwise he would not have moved the court for a remit.

22.03.95   -  I received a copy "Record with Adjustments for the pursuer" exactly one week after the postponed Options Hearing.   Counsel for the pursuer had obviously lied to the court that four more weeks were required as a result of the exceptionally large number of Craves and Pleas-in-Law, because not one reference was made to any Craves, Pleas-in-Law, or indeed to any part of my Defence, but a crucial Plea-in-Law was sneakily added to try to prevent my Defence being remitted to probation.

(2)  -  So counsel for the pursuer, the female solicitor who sinisterly claimed she was acting on behalf of both the pursuer and the second defender (my wife), had most certainly just been buying time at the Options Hearing on 15 March 1995 to allow her to move to remit the Cause to the Court of Session after the date on which the motion would ordinarily have been time-barred. LINK   And Sheriff McNeill had lent his assistance to the furtive stratagem.

(3)  -  I wrote to the Sheriff Clerk Depute to log the fact that I was expressing my utmost disapproval at Dorman Jeffrey & Co. moving for a postponement on the basis that they did not have adequate time to study my Defence when they were already in possession of a copy of my Defence for a full two weeks, and that for months they had in their possession a copy of all the facts submitted in my Condescendence.

12.04.95   -  A motion was solicited to remit the Cause to the Court of Session.  The pursuer's legal agents, Dundas & Wilson LLP brought the new kid on the block into their squad, advocate Eric William Robertson, the most recent recruit to the gravy-train cavalcade.    (In May 2014, Dundas & Wilson would merge with CMS Cameron McKenna, becoming the sixth largest global firm in the world as Dundas & Wilson CMS.)

(2)   -  Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole, having heard counsel for the pursuer, the first defender (myself) personally, and the solicitor for the second defender (my wife), remitted the Cause to the Court of Session.   And having heard counsel for the pursuer on the question of expenses refused the same, saying that "any question of expenses will be determined by the Court of Session".

(3)  -  If it were to be accepted that there were no circumstances to justify refusal or postponement of the Sheriff Court's authority, why did Eric William Robertson for Dundas & Wilson LLP move to have the Cause remitted to the Court of Session?

(4)  -  I opposed the motion to remit the Cause to the Court of Session on the grounds that I was unemployed and since I had been stymied from receiving legal aid I could not afford the expense coming to the Sheriff Court, far less the Court of Session.   Sheriff Poole assured me, with a droll quality, that it would not cost any more to go to the Court of Session because it was just round the corner.   Even in the face of adversity, I could not suppress a chuckle.   Sheriff Poole continued, adding: "I do not have the competence to preside over a case in which the integrity of fellow sheriffs are being called into question."

(5)  -  The Journal of the Law Society of Scotland reported on 29 December 2012 that Sheriff Poole has been awarded the OBE in the New Year Honours List for services to justice in Scotland and to the community in Edinburgh. LINK  It ought to have been for services to entertainment in Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

20.04.95  -  The Clerk of Session sent me "confirmation" that the Cause was remitted to the Court of Session on the motion of the "Sheriff" and that the remit must be lodged in the General Department of the Court of Session no later than 5 May 1995.

22.04.95  -  I wrote to the Clerk of Session pointing out his grave error, informing him that the Cause was not remitted to the Court of Session on the motion of the sheriff, but rather on the motion of the pursuer, but that it had been merely "accepted" by the sheriff, Isobel Anne Poole. LINK

25.04.95  -  Without an apology, the Clerk of Session wrote back stating, simply, that the case was remitted on the motion of the "pursuers" and that the remit must be lodged no later than 5 May 1995, which will be done by the pursuer's agent.

04.05.95  -  Lord Gill, the Lord Ordinary, on the unopposed motion of the pursuer, appointed the Cause to the Adjustments Roll and continued the Cause on said Roll until 14 June 1995.

09.05.95   -  Unbeknown to me at the time, my wife advised her agents Cockburn McGrane & Co. that her mother had offered to pay the (pretended) debt.  She was told by her agents that the offer would be put to agents for the pursuer immediately.  This has since been freely and officially admitted by the pursuer's agents, and is logged in the "Final Cause".

09.05.95   -  The same day, Lord Milligan, the Lord Ordinary, on the unopposed motion of the second defender, my wife, sisted the Cause pending an extension of her Legal Aid Certificate to cover the proceedings in the Court of Session.

09.05.95   -  Again, the same day, a large envelope arrived from Dorman Jeffrey & Co. containing 11 copies of the Record (i.e., the pursuer's and the first and second defenders' cases) in the Remitted Cause.  It contained four Pleas-in-Law by the pursuer.

19.05.95   -  I received a summons to answer the "criminal" charge in the Sheriff Court of failing without reasonable excuse to deliver to the interim trustee, Graham Ritchie, a list of assets and liabilities.   The pleading diet was fixed for 31 May 1995.   I was required to plead by post.  I sent in my plea of not guilty.

31.05.95  -  My plea of not guilty went before the Sheriff Court.  An intermediate diet was fixed for 10.00am on 21 August 1995 and a trial diet was fixed for 10.00am on 4 September 1995. LINK

14.08.95   -  My wife went to see her solicitor at Cockburn McGrane & Co. without an appointment, but her solicitor was too busy to see her!   Her assistant, however, told my wife they had still not received a response from the pursuer's agents about the offer made by my wife mother to pay the (bogus) debt on 9 May 1995, more than three months earlier. LINK   They could not exactly be accused of brooking no delay in calling a halt to the gravy-train cavalcade.

21.08.95   -  I appeared in the Sheriff Court at 10.00am for the intermediate diet for the alleged "criminal offence" of failing without reasonable excuse to deliver to the interim trustee, Graham Ritchie, a list of assets and liabilities.

(2)  -  Sheriff Andrew Bell presided over the proceedings.   I was called before him at 1.15pm at which time I asked for an adjournment on the grounds that Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole had remitted the civil "equivalent" to the Court of Session precisely because she felt she did not have the competence to preside over a case in which the integrity of fellow sheriffs were being called into question.   I also pointed out that if I ultimately win my case in the Court of Session and if that tribunal accepts that the sequestration was invalid from the outset, the criminal case would automatically fall because the higher tribunal would simultaneously have decreed that I most certainly did have a "reasonable excuse" for failing to deliver to the interim trustee, Graham Ritchie, a list of assets and liabilities.   Of course, I had it in mind that if I won my "criminal" case in the Sheriff Court, it would be an enormous supportive argument or matter of persuasion in the civil case in the higher tribunal; the Court of Session.

(3)  -  Moreover, as I mentioned to Sheriff Bell, if Sheriff Poole felt she did not have the competence to preside over a case in which the integrity of fellow sheriffs were being called into question, how could a sheriff in the case in the criminal "equivalent" consider himself competent to preside over a case in which almost the exact same submissions were being offered as a defence?

(4)  -  Sheriff Bell said with an apparent geniality, smirking at the lawerlings in the well of the court: "I hope I am not one of the sheriffs whose integrity is being called into question?   Being, by that time, considerably distrustful of court processes, I was not convinced that Sheriff Bell was not chosen specifically to preside over the diet, since he was one of the sheriffs whose integrity was being called into question - and probably the principal one. LINK  His presence on the bench was perhaps a tactic to intimidate me into tamely retracting my accusations.    Making no bones about it, I assertively replied: "Yes, you ARE one of them!"

(5)  -  Whether or not he was actually aware he was declared one of them, he nonetheless withdrew his attention from me for a brief spell and, to ensure he was not just being the victim of a practical unpleasantry, quickly thumbed his way through my submissions to verify that he was in fact included.   Having substantiated it in the affirmative, he sat in silent horror, feeling unable to be dismissive.   On this occasion, however, he did not throw a tantrum and scurry out the courtroom, but only said he could not deal with my request for an adjournment.   He obviously had to recuse himself on the basis of potential or actual bias, or on the appearance of such partiality, so he arranged for me to appear before one of the other sheriffs in another courtroom that same day to make my request for an adjournment.

(6)  -  I appeared before Sheriff Stoddart in Court No. 3.  He adjourned the intermediate diet until 1st November 1995 LINK and the trial diet until 15 November 1995 LINK, with the instruction that if I could not urge the Court of Session to expedite the civil case he would not be prepared to put the trial off any longer.  Everyone, it seemed, felt disconcerted about dealing with this case.

(7)  -  In any event, there was no logic in Sheriff Stoddart's ruling since there were innumerable causal factors intrinsic to this case in the Sheriff Court and to the civil case in the higher Court of Session.  They all seemed out of joint in this maze of unsurety; a headache created from their own drama.

23.08.95   -  I wrote to the Regional Procurator Fiscal Robert Ferguson Lees, asking him to cite as witnesses at my trial, the then Lord Advocate Lord Alan Rodger of Earlsferry; Sheriff Bell; Sheriff McNeill; Ian Rogers former poll tax officer and former purported creditor; Ian Rogers' advocate and judge to be Robert Reed; Graham Ritchie, chartered accountant and would-be permanent trustee; Eric William Robertson, the advocate appointed by Dundas & Wilson LLP, representing the pursuer Graham Ritchie when Sheriff Poole remitted the Cause to the Court of Session; Randolph Murray, solicitor and agent for CAP-T; Fergus Christie and Robbie Burnett, partners with Drummond Miller WS and the agents for the poll tax officer Ian Rogers, who uttered a false "Oath by Creditor", which was produced by Graham Ritchie on 11 October 1994, almost two years after the bankruptcy was railroaded through the court LINK; and finally DC John Crawford and DC Sandy Forrest.

(2)  -  I reminded Robert Lees of Article 3(d) of the European Convention of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, which states: "Everyone charged with a criminal offence has the following minimum rights ... (d) to examine or have examined witnesses against him and to obtain the attendance and examination of witnesses on his behalf under the same conditions as witnesses against him. ..."

(3)  -  I enclosed for Robert Lees' perusal a verbatim copy of the "condescendence" section of my Defence (i.e. the statement of facts), which was lodged in the civil "equivalent" in the Court of Session, so that Robert Lees could not misunderstand the absurdity of the allegations against me and would realise that I was clearly the victim of characters who had abandoned any morals that perhaps they once had.

24.08.95   -  I wrote to Mr J Gilmer, Assistant Clerk of Session, asking if he could advise me when the hearing of the civil case would take place, informing him that I had appeared before Sheriff Stoddard in Courtroom 3 of the Sheriff Court on 21 August 1995 asking for the trial to be adjourned until after the Court of Session heard my case in the civil court because there is an intrinsic causal connection throughout them both, with the Defence/Exposé in them both being the same. LINK

(2)  -  I informed Mr Gilmer that Sheriff Stoddart had read the twelve pages I lodged for my Defence in the Court of Session and on recognising that if or when my case was successful in that higher tribunal, the procurator fiscal's case in the criminal equivalent would automatically fall, which is why Sheriff Stoddart adjourned the trial until 15 November 1995. LINK  I also informed him that this decision was with the proviso that I contact the Clerk of Session and inform him that the sheriff would not be prepared to adjourn the trial again, so could he (Mr Gilmer) expedite the proceedings in the Court of Session.   I said I would be much obliged if he could advise me when these proceedings in the civil case would take place in that higher tribunal so that I could advise the Sheriff Court at the adjourned intermediate diet on 1st November 1995 that I was ready to proceed with my Defence/Exposé. LINK

29.08.95  -  The pursuer in the civil case, Graham Ritchie, applied to the Sheriff Court for a deferment of the Bankruptcy discharge date for a period of two years from and after 27 November 1995, which was signed, not surprisingly, by Sheriff Peter McNeill, the selfsame sheriff who was intrinsic to the circumstances that led to the stage management of the bankruptcy.

05.09.95   -  I was served with a copy writ in relation to the deferment application and was required to answer thereto and conform to the warrant.   What Sheriff McNeill ordered me to do was simply forget all the corruption that preceded, and, indeed, superseded, the bankruptcy hearing, and simply sign a declaration that (i) I had made a full and fair surrender of my so-called estates and a full declaration of all the claims I am entitled to make against other persons; and (ii) that I have delivered to the interim or permanent trustee every document under his control relating to my estate or financial affairs.

(2)  -  This was sub judice because I still awaited a hearing in the Court of Session on two counts: (i) against the decision of Sheriff Andrew Bell in refusing my appeal in the Sheriff Court on 28 May 1990 LINK; and (ii) the case that was remitted to the Court of Session by Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole, which should ordinarily make not only the deferment decision fall but also reverse the decision that make me bankrupt in the first place.

05.09.95   -  The Assistant Clerk of Session, Yvonne Anderson wrote to me in answer to my letter of 24 August 1995 in which I was asked that the civil case be expedited. LINK  She stated: "This case is presently sisted by the second defender pending the outcome of a legal aid application, therefore I cannot advise you of any hearing date as there is not one.   This case will remain sisted until one of the parties enrols a motion to have it recalled for further procedure."

10.09.95   -  I lodged a declaration against the deferment of the discharge date, stating, inter alia:

"In the normal execution of an interim or permanent trustee's duties, an application to the Sheriff Court for an order to defer the discharge of a debtor's bankruptcy might appear, on the face of it, justifiable, but I will illustrate beyond any shadow of a doubt that not only would a deferment in this case be an injustice but, for the reasons hereinafter contained, the order would be an extreme impediment to natural justice.
"My 'answers' to Graham Ritchie's Condescendence ... reveal that it is precisely his [the pursuer's] own delaying tactics that have made it necessary for him to have to apply for a deferment of the discharge date and that he had an enormous amount of leeway to bring this saga to a conclusion well within that discharge date.
"I am not disputing that Graham Ritchie was appointed interim trustee and thereafter permanent trustee, but he was appointed after a deep-rooted politically corrupt process, railroaded through various courtrooms.    In my 'Answers to Condescendence' in the remitted case to the Court of Session I have submitted the entire process of the political corruption to which I have been subjected since 1989.   I have also exposed all the politically corrupt people, including two sheriffs, who have willingly become involved.
"In the criminal action I face for not complying with Graham Ritchie's instruction, I submitted the same defence to the procurator fiscal as I did in my defence that was lying in the Court of Session.   All my cards were on the table, as it were, simply because I have nothing to hide or to be ashamed of, as I am, body and soul, the innocent victim of the corruption that prevails; nothing more and nothing less.    Both the aforementioned civil and criminal cases have still to be heard in, respectively, the Court of Session and the Sheriff Court.    But I will not be made to feel guilty for being the victim of morally bankrupt people who ride roughshod over our laws. ...
"In accordance with the citation of 27 November 1992 LINK, and pursuant to the copy Petition and Warrant and Inventory of Productions of 9 December 1992 , I appeared in the Sheriff Court on 21 December 1992 to show cause why sequestration should not be awarded. LINK  I was systematically and blatantly prevented from doing so by the selfsame sheriff I have exposed in my defence in the civil and criminal cases as being politically corrupt, the selfsame sheriff who has now ordered me to lodge a declaration why a deferment of the discharge date should not be granted.   Sheriff Peter McNeill railroaded the sequestration through illegally after preventing me from showing cause why sequestration should not be awarded, and he did so despite the fact that I accused the court of being politically corrupt three times; twice in the well of the court and once as I was departing.   It is absolutely criminal that the same sheriff is still involved in a process in which he was one of the material causes of creating the injustice.   He should not now be allowed to have any further part to play in this ongoing saga.
"As a direct result of my exposé of Sheriff McNeill and another sheriff, Sheriff Andrew Bell, in various sheriff court houses, Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole decided to remit the case to the Court of Session on the request of the pursuer, but primarily because she was not competent to preside over a challenge to the integrity of fellow sheriffs. ...
"On top of everything else, [Sheriff McNeill] ... is the selfsame sheriff who ordered me to lodge a declaration why a deferment of the discharge date of the bankruptcy should not be granted.  With all the corruption that was engineered beforehand, you would not have to be a train driver, linked up to logic, to see what would be railroaded through next. ...
"I did not hear from [Graham Ritchie for] ... over a year ... , which was in a letter dated 5 May 1994. LINK   [So] ... what was Graham Ritchie doing during all that time?   He wasted thirteen months of the bankruptcy period and now he has the audacity to apply for the discharge [date] to be deferred.   If he is running out of time it is solely his own doing.   Surely it is not in the interests of natural justice to resurrect a case that lay dormant for thirteen months, and then apply for the discharge [date] to be deferred in addition.    Surely it is an extreme impediment to natural justice if a deferment is granted after over a third of the bankruptcy period has been squandered. ...   [For him to temporise an action then complain there has been a delay, is like a child killing his parents then complain he is an orphan.]
"Dorman Jeffrey & Co. now have the colossal gall to suggest that I am continuing to be obstructive, yet I am the only person with an ounce of decency amidst all the politically corrupt people it has been my misfortune to have crossed paths during this lawless process.   I am the only one who is supposed to feel guilty but I will never allow anyone to make me feel guilty when my participation is strictly as the victim of hopelessly immoral people.
"Given the fact that Graham Ritchie left the process in limbo for more than a third (13 months) of the bankruptcy period it would be unreasonable and an impediment to natural justice to defer the discharge of the bankruptcy for any period of time, and that it should be automatically discharged on the proper date.  Graham Ritchie had an abundance of time to pursue the pretended debt but for long enough he chose not to do so.    If he finds himself running short of time it is his own fault because he knew as far back as early February 1993 about the whole truth of the matter. LINK  And he knew then exactly what my position was and that it would never change."

(2)  -  I forgot to include in the declaration the fact that my wife's mother offered to pay the pretended debt on 9 May 1995. LINK

(3)  -  Another crucial element came to light.  Not only did the pursuer Graham Ritchie apply for a deferment of the discharge date after an offer was made to pay the pretended debt, but the application was made after the former pretended creditor Ian Rodgers had left the employment of the council.

(4)  -  It has to be asked, therefore, on whose behalf was Graham Ritchie pursuing the artificial debt?   It was certainly not on behalf of Ian Rogers because his role as the pretended creditor expired when he left the employment of the council on 5 April 1993 . LINK

(5)  -  Ian Rogers, and only Ian Rogers, was the sole (pretended) creditor; not the council or any other person or body of persons.   Even though there is a successor authority to replace his ex-employers, the Lothian Regional Council, there is no successor council official to perform his duties as poll tax officer because that position with the council was long made redundant.   So it follows that no employee of the council can claim to be the successor (pretended) creditor in a job that has long been nonexistent.

14.09.95   -  Sheriff Clerk Depute Baillie, sent me a letter stating: "I have to inform you that the sheriff [Sheriff Peter McNeill], having read the document [my declaration], is not of the opinion that it contains the declarations required by the interlocutor of the court dated 29 August 1995 and he has therefore not fixed a date for a hearing in terms of Section 54(5a) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985.   The Application will proceed further when when the Permanent Trustee lodges a motion to grant the deferment of discharge in terms of Note No. 6 of process, a copy of which has been served upon you."

18.09.95   -  My wife had an appointment with solicitors Cockburn McGrane & Co., and was informed that her legal aid certificate had been extended to cover the costs in the Court of Session.   (It would be mind boggling for the average taxpayer to comprehend how the legal profession can, willy nilly, fritter away tens of thousands of pounds on Supreme Court processes in order to fleece the comparatively negligible amount of under £1,000 of an arranged bogus debt.)   In any event, I wrote to him again asking him to return the copy of my defence/exposé because, I said: "I am sure you have had ample time to photocopy it for both yourself and for the Lord Advocate."

(2)  -  I also added: "Now that you are aware of the facts surrounding the case ... could you inform me if it is still your intention to try to machinate a conviction, flying in the face of natural justice?   And if it is your intention, have you cited as witnesses all the politically corrupt people I requested you to cite in my letter of 23 August 1995?" LINK

19.09.95  -  With regards to the civil case, I replied to the Sheriff Clerk Depute's letter of 14 September 1995 LINK, part of which expressed: "Bearing in mind the foregoing circumstances, and the politically corrupt involvement of various figures in the legal system, I would advise that, if the pretended permanent trustee lodges a motion to ask the court to grant the deferment of the discharge in terms of Note no. 6 of the process, I want to be informed of any hearing resulting from the same, and to be present at the next station of the railroad.   Incidentally, contrary to what you say in the final sentence of your letter of 14 September 1995 LINK, I have not had a copy of Note No. 6 of the process served upon me, and would appreciate a copy being served at your earliest convenience."

(2)  -  Not only would a copy of Note No. 6 of the process not be served upon me, but I was not to be allowed a hearing, and would therefore not be able to put my case to the court,

(3)  -  As mentioned on 10 September 1995, paragraph 8: "With all the corruption that has been engineered beforehand, you would not have to be a train driver, linked up to logic, to see what would be railroaded through next." LINK

05.10.95   -  The form book proved impeccable.   Again, showing contempt for our courts, our laws and natural justice, Sheriff Peter McNeill railroaded the deferment issue through the court without the slightest reference to my defence.   The bankruptcy discharge date was deferred for a period of two years from and after 27 November 1995, in my absence and without intimation.

10.10.95   -  The Sheriff Clerk Depute sent me a copy of Sheriff McNeill's blunt decision to defer the discharge date.

(2)  -  It was obvious that Sheriff McNeill's best interests lay in railroading the deferment through on another fast track, enabling him to continue the stage management theme while throwing a cloak of concealment over his earlier deep-rooted involvement in the political corruption and the crime protection syndicate.  It was a long time since Sheriff McNeill and justice were even loosely acquainted.

(3)  -  He did not even take into account the fact that my wife was still awaiting word from her lawyer about whether or not her mother's offer on 9 May 1995 to pay the (pretended) debt had been accepted. LINK

(4)  -  What was also ignored was the fact that I was currently in the process of fighting the validity of the original sequestration in both the Sheriff Court (criminal section) and in the Court of Session (civil court).

(5)   -  Another immensely important factor was ignored.  My case in the Sheriff Court, which was remitted to the Court of Session on 12 April 1995, was remitted four-and-a-half months before the application for the deferment of the discharge date was lodged in the Sheriff Court.  This deferment application should more properly have been lodged in the Court of Session.   The all-important factor is Actor debet sequi forum rei, which is explained in full hereinafter at 12 October 1995, paragraphs (5) and (6). LINK

(6)  -  There was also the not insignificant aspect of the appeal I let lie to the Court of Session under Section 29(2) of the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc. (Scotland) Act 1987 against the decision of Sheriff Andrew Bell after my case was heard on 28 May 1990. LINK  This is the appeal that can not now be heard in the Court of Session because the legislation was officially invalidated by parliament, so no such legislation currently exists under which that appeal could be heard.

(7)  -  And the crucial matter about the unsigned "Oath by Creditor" could never simply disappear.  Together with the fact that I was not permitted on 21 December 1992 to show cause why sequestration should not be awarded. LINK   The entire complexity of the cases became such a downright shambles that not even a Philadelphia lawyer could unwrangle them.    There was no legal process available to unclutter the web of intrigue woven by those irresponsible people trying to fortify the invalid poll tax legislation , unless they applied underhanded, furtive, illicit tactics.

12.10.95   -  Now that the deferment of the discharge date was railroaded through, my wife told me for the first time that on 9 May 1995 her mother offered to pay the (pretended) debt. LINK   It became patently clear that this offer was made before Graham Ritchie's agents had applied to the (wrong) court for a deferment.   And this was before Graham Ritchie's agents had informed my wife's agents whether or not the offer made by my wife's mother had been accepted.  It was this uncertainty, coupled with the deferment being granted under such sinister circumstances that impelled my wife to inform me.

(2)  -  I immediately wrote to the Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson QC, explaining the absurd circumstances.   I will not include a list of the correspondence in this chronology because to this day I have still not had a satisfactory reply from the Sheriff Principal with regard to the discharge date.

(3)  -  Another crucial factor emerged about the deferment in the Sheriff Court of the discharge date of the sequestration from and after 27 November 1995.

(4)  -  My case in the Sheriff Court was remitted to the Court of Session on 12.04.95 LINK, but the application for the deferment of the discharge date was not applied for in the Court of Session, but was applied for in the Sheriff Court four-and-a-half months later, only to be railroaded again by the ready and willing, servile Sheriff McNeill.

(5)   -  The all-important factor is: "Actor debet sequi forum rei:- 'A pursuer must follow the forum or court of the defender; that is, a pursuer raising an action against his debtor or obligant, must do so before the forum or court to the jurisdiction of which the defender is subject at the time.   The rationale of this is obvious; for if the defender be outwith the jurisdiction of the Court before which he is cited , he is not bound, and cannot be compelled to answer before that Court; and any decree of that Court will be valueless, there being no way of enforcing it.'"

(6)   -  So not only was the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc. (Scotland) Act 1987 invalid in Scotland from the outset, and that I was made bankrupt through an illicit process by politically corrupt sheriffs Andrew Bell and Peter McNeill - the latter who railroaded the stage managed bankruptcy through the court while I had an appeal lying in the Court of Session against the former sheriff - and that it was railroaded through without allowing me the opportunity to "show cause why sequestration should not be awarded", contrary to Section 12(2) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, and that the crucial proviso in relation to the Oath by Creditor was not adhered to, contrary to Section 11(1) of the same Act, but the deferment of the discharge date is invalid for another decisive reason: it was railroaded through the wrong court, making the decree valueless, "there being no way of enforcing it". The pursuer was obligated by law to apply to the Court of Session for the deferment because that was the court under whose jurisdiction I was subject at the time.   Justice itself had long proved to be an abstraction, completely devoid of reality.
As mentioned in Charles Dickens' Bleak House, "There is not one honourable man among its [the legal profession’s] practitioners who would warn them: ‘Suffer any wrong that can be done you, rather than come here [i.e., a suitor in a court of law]’.   In layman's terms it could be described basically as "to go to court is to court disaster".

12.10.95   -  The same day, I wrote to the Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson QC, complaining about Sheriff McNeill deferring the discharge date while I was in the process of challenging the validity of the original sequestration in the Court of Session.

(2)  -  I advised the Sheriff Principal: "The sheriff laid down preconditions [for the] hearing that I find unacceptable.   I have my own reasons for contending the deferment and will not be hustled into providing a defence that is ineffective ... to enable it to be railroaded through the court on a fast track.

(3)  -  "It is Sheriff McNeill's duty to preside over the arguments that are presented, not to restrict or stifle one party's arguments in order to render that party's case worthless. ...

(4)  -  I insist, therefore, that I am given the opportunity to present my case personally on my own terms, not on an alien party's terms whose underlying interest lies strictly in ensuring that my case fails.

(5)  -  "I would hope at this time you will appoint a different sheriff to preside over this case and appoint a date for me to defend my corner in the terms previously submitted in my Answers to Condescendence (copy enclosed) and in the verbal terms with which I may further compliment those submissions."

(6)  -  I wrote twice to the Sheriff Principal this day.   I did not find out until after I posted the first letter that my wife had informed her agents, Cockburn McGrane & Co. that her mother had offered to pay the debt on 9 May 1995.  LINK

(7)  -  I supplemented the first letter by adding: "Apart from the very relevant reasons I mentioned in ... [the first letter] ... for insisting that Sheriff McNeill does not railroad another decision through the court, ... contrary not only to natural justice but to any form of legal propriety, I have the most crucial information with which to enlighten you.   This will prove beyond any shadow of a doubt that I am the victim of the low-life faction that operates within our legal structure.

(8)  -  "My wife just informed me that an offer was made by her mother on Tuesday, 9 May 1995 to pay the pretended debt to gangster Graham Ritchie, the pretended trustee of my would-be estate.   In the light of this fact, how can he justify his audacity for applying for a deferment of the discharge date?   And how can Sheriff McNeill even attempt to explain away his decision to accept Graham Ritchie's Summary Application?   Not that he could in any event because he simply made a brute assertion without permitting me a hearing in court or addressing my submissions in my Answers to Condescendence and Plea-in-Law, and railroad the case through on a fast track.

(9)  -  "This may not be earth-shattering news to you, but I am sure the general public would be immensely disturbed by the way our legal system is plagued with politically corrupt people who gravely abuse our laws.

(10)  -  "Incidentally, as far as I am concerned, I would not, and will not, condescend to, compromise with, or acquiesce in any illegality with which I am confronted from gangsters you may or may not wish to support.

(11)  -  "I await your response, reasoned or otherwise, within a moderate timescale."

19.10.95  -  Sheriff Clerk Depute Alan Fulton replied on behalf of the Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson to my two letters of 12 October 1995, but it was an evasive response, blatantly avoiding to address any of the points I raised. LINK

21.10.95   -  I wrote again to the Sheriff Principal regarding the deferment in the civil case.  Some of its content is as follows: "I would be much obliged if you dealt with this matter yourself because it would seem that Alan Fulton is incapable of comprehending the simple terms of my two letters and to my "Answers to Condescendence" and "Plea-in-Law" enclosed therein, revealing the continued deep-rooted political corruption of Sheriff Peter McNeill and his partner in crime, Graham Ritchie, chartered accountant with Ernst & Young. ...

((2)  -  "Under no circumstances am I going to sit back with my thumb in my mouth while contemptible delinquents in our legal system abuse our laws and make me a victim of their corrupt disposition."

25.10.95   -  Again it was Sheriff Clerk Depute Alan Fulton who replied, stating: "The Sheriff Principal has passed me your letter of 21 October 1995.  The Sheriff Principal does not propose to respond to your letter in person, and he has asked me to reply on his behalf.

(2)  -  "The Sheriff Principal takes a very serious view of your unacceptable comments regarding Sheriff McNeill, and considers that they may well amount to a contempt of court.  He considers that you have been fully informed regarding the procedural courses which are open to you, and in the circumstances he sees no purpose in continuing this correspondence.  He now regards this correspondence closed."

30.10.95   -  I wrote back in the following terms, addressing my letter once again to the Sheriff Principal Gordon Nicholson QC: "You seem to have things the wrong way round in your response.   While I fully expect you to take a 'serious view' of my comments, I find it rather bizarre that the exposé contained in the copy of my Answers to Condescendence about Sheriff McNeill's political and/or criminal corruption is considered by you to be unacceptable.   What is unacceptable is your newly adopted acquiescence in the corruption.   "Acquiescence" in law signifies acceptance or consent of that corruption; therefore this makes you guilty of corruption by acquiescence.   One must never apologise for saying even the most unpleasant things which are needed most urgently to be said.

(2)  -  "What is more, I must say, your insinuation that my statement of facts 'may well amount to a contempt of court' appears to be a pathetic attempt at satire when I seem to be the only person involved in this saga who actually respects our courts and laws, unlike the corrupt deviants I have exposed in my submissions to the Court of Session, to the Sheriff Court, and also to you [and more recently to the High Court of Justiciary].

(3)  -  "I must point out that whether you do or do not regard 'this correspondence closed', I most certainly do not consider it closed because I do not accept that Sheriff McNeill's illegal railroad of the deferment of bankruptcy to be binding for the reasons mentioned in my earlier correspondence and in my Answers to Condescendence.   So until you answer the questions in my letter of 21 October 1995 this correspondence can never be closed. ..." LINK

(4)  -  I wrote in access of one hundred times over a number of years in the same terms to the Sheriff Principal (as I did to the other "legal" degenerates) in the hope that he would either adequately address all the points I raised in my repeated, monotonous but sincere correspondence, or would allow me another day in court, charged with contempt of court, so that I could expose in person all the humdingers of skulduggery.

01.11.95   -  In respect of the "criminal offence", I appeared in court No. 10 in the Sheriff Court before Sheriff Stoddart for the intermediate diet.

(2)  -  I provided him with both a copy of the letter I sent to the Court of Session on 24 August 1995 in which I asked that the civil case be brought forward so that it could be heard prior to my trial in the Sheriff Court LINK, and also a copy of of the reply thereof by the Assistant Clerk of Session on 5 September 1995, which stated that the case in the higher court will remain sisted until one of the parties enrols a motion to have it recalled for further procedure. LINK

(3)  -  Sheriff Stoddart curiously stuck by his guns, saying he was not prepared to adjourn the case again, and reaffirmed the trial diet as 15 November 1995 LINK.   This was not only curious it was blinkered and wilfully amateurish.   He was going the wrong way about it, starting at the wrong end in an attempt to paper up the cracks.   Obviously, if I ultimately won the civil case in the Court of Session the criminal trial in the Sheriff Court would be reduced to farcical waste of time and money.

04.11.95   -  I wrote to the Sheriff Clerk's Office, insisting it was imperative that I was tried before a jury as I feared I would not be permitted a fair hearing.  I added:
"If the people in the legal system feel they have nothing to fear from this request, it [a jury trial] will be granted.  Somehow, however, I think you will not appreciate the litmus test of a jury trial, or the evidence that would expose to a jury all the corruption with which I have been confronted.  A refusal to grant a jury trial will be a clear recognition of that fact.
“I would be obliged if you could respond at your earliest convenience so that I might preprepare my appeal to the High Court of Justiciary."

07.11.95  -  In the "criminal case", I cited as witnesses, the then Lord Advocate, Lord Alan Rodger of Earlsferry; Sheriffs Andrew Bell and Peter McNeill; the ex-poll tax officer and erstwhile (pretended) creditor Ian M Rogers; the would-be permanent trustee Graham Ritchie, chartered accountant with Ernst & Young; Fergus Christie and Robbie Burnett, partners with Drummond Miller WS who uttered the false "Oath by Creditor"; and Robert Ferguson Lees, the Regional Procurator Fiscal.  I wrote to them in the following terms to their places of business:
"Please accept this letter as a formal citation for you to appear to give evidence as a witness for the Defence in the above trial [i.e., Procurator Fiscal –v- William Burns] on Wednesday, 15 November 1995 within the Sheriff Court, Chambers Street, Edinburgh. LINK
“Let me remind you that failure to appear may result in the court granting a warrant for you apprehension.”

08.11.95  -  Sheriff Clerk Depute R J MacPherson replied to my letter of 4 November 1995 asking for a jury trial.  It stated:
“Your letter does not disclose any point to which I have any control or can be dealt with by this department at this stage of the proceedings.”

08.11.95  -  The Assistant Procurator Fiscal, M. J. Bell also sent me a letter, which stated:
“I enclose a copy of a petition together with an order from the sheriff.   This petition will call on 15 November prior to your trial.” LINK
“The purpose of this petition was to crave the court to make an order that either the citations in respect of Sheriffs Andrew M Bell and Peter G B McNeill, and Regional Procurator Fiscal Robert F Lees, are invalid; or, if they are held to be valid, to make an order excusing them from obtempering [i.e., yielding obedience to] the citations.”

08.11.95  -  The Lord Advocate Lord Alan Rodger of Earlsferry was elevated to the bench, installing him as a High Court Judge.

09.11.95   -  Sheriff Peter McNeill sent me a letter stating:
“I refer to the document dated 5 November 1995 addressed jointly to Sheriff Bell and myself requesting that I attend court as a witness at the above [i.e., P.F. -v- William Burns].
“I am presently recuperating from major surgery and will not be fit to attend at that diet.
“I enclose medical certificate on soul and conscience to that effect.”

14.11.95  -  In response to my citation to Lothian Regional Council at Chesser House, 500 Gorgie Road, Edinburgh, on 7 November 1995, for the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers to attend the Sheriff Court as a defence witness, I received a reply from John Campbell, Principal Assistant with Lothian Regional Council, in the following terms:
“I refer to your letter of 7 November 1995, addressed to Ian M Rogers and delivered here by ordinary mail on 9 November 1995.
“I write to advise that Ian M Rogers retired from this Department and is no longer an employee of Lothian Regional Council.
“This letter is being hand-delivered by two members of my staff as insufficient time remains to use the Royal Mail Service.”

(2)  -  This so-called "retirement" would obviously have a material effect on the purported creditor/debtor scenario.   As mentioned on 5 April 1993 LINK, "The poll tax officer's job was made redundant".   Which is to say, the extortionate expenses incurred by one individual is his responsibility alone; that responsibility can not be passed on to another individual.   And the poll tax officer's job can not be passed on to a successor employee because, if the job was made redundant, no such successor exists; therefore no successor would-be creditor exists.   Even if I had been deemed a debtor through a legitimate process, it stands to reason that, if a creditor ceases to be a creditor, the debtor so-called ceases to be a debtor; hence, if a creditor no longer exists, I cannot possibly be branded a debtor."

15.11.95   -  On the morning of the trial in the Sheriff Court I received a letter dated 13 November 1995 from Linda Flockhart, Acting Private Secretary in the Lord Advocate's Chambers, stating:
“I am writing to inform you that the Lord Advocate has no knowledge of the charges which you face and is unable to attend court to appear as a defence witness.” LINK

(2)  -  This flies in the face of the "Complaint of the Procurator Fiscal" against me, which stated:
“Contrary to the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 Section 19(2b) and the ‘Lord Advocate’ [my emphasis] has certified in terms of Section 68(10) and (3) of the aforementioned Act that ‘evidence sufficient in his opinion to justify proceedings for the above specified offence “came to his knowledge” [again my emphasis] on 13 March 1995'."

(3)  -  The contradiction here is threefold: (1) When I was formally charged by DC John Crawford and DC Sandy Forrest on 17 February 1995 , I was informed by them that the charges were being preferred on the orders of the Lord Advocate LINK; (2) The charge I later received claimed that the Lord Advocate certified that the specified charges came to his knowledge on 13 March 1995 - almost a month after DC John Crawford and DC Sandy Forrest claimed the Lord Advocate ordered the charges to be preferred; (3) In the letter I received from the Lord Advocate's Chambers on the morning of the trial the Lord Advocate denied any knowledge of the charges I faced. LINK   This could have been a play on words because Lord Rodger had been elevated to the bench exactly a week earlier and was replaced by Lord Mackay of Drumadoon.   There was some controversy when Lord Rodger was appointed a judge because he had nominated himself to the bench.   Anything to avoid giving evidence!   Regardless, Linda Flockhart avoided explaining these details to me.  A half truth masquerading as a whole truth, is a whole lie!

15.11.95   -  Sheriff Richard John Dinwoodie Scott presided over the petition, prior to the trial proper.   In the hearing of the petition, Procurator Fiscal Depute asked the court on behalf of Sheriffs Bell and McNeill, and the former Lord Advocate Lord Rodger of Earlsferry, to excuse them from giving evidence.

(2)  -  The Lord Advocate could not have asked the Procurator Fiscal Depute to petition the court on his behalf because I received a letter from his secretary that morning, which stated;
"I am writing to inform you that the Lord Advocate has no knowledge of the charges which you face and is unable to attend court as a defence witness."
So what was the PF trying to pull here?   If the Lord Advocate intimated to me he has no knowledge of the charges, taking the trouble to have me informed by post, it is inconceivable that he would go to the trouble of asking the PF to enrol a motion on his behalf to excuse him from giving evidence.

(3)  -  When I attempted to bring these contradictions to the notice of Sheriff Scott, he adjourned the petition hearing for approximately 30 minutes to allow the Procurator Fiscal Depute to pop next door to the Crown Office for documentation that might back up his claim.   He returned with a document, in pristine condition, signed personally by “Rodger of Earlsferry”.   This belatedly produced document, dated 5 April 1995, stated:
“I certify in terms of Section 68(1) and (3) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 that evidence sufficient in his opinion to justify proceedings against William Burns, 18 Shore Road, South Queensferry for a contravention of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, Section 19(2) came to my knowledge on 13 March 1995.”
This was backed up by the averments on the charge sheet, which stated:
“Contrary to the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, Section 19(2b) the Lord Advocate has certified in terms of Section 68(1) and (3) of the aforementioned Act that evidence sufficient in his opinion to justify proceedings for the above specified offence came to his knowledge on 13 March 1995.”
However, this contradicted the earlier statements of DC John Crawford and DC Sandy Forrest and was contradictory to Lord Rodger of Earlsferry’s own averments, which I received on the morning of the trial, claiming he had no knowledge of the charges I faced.  This letter came from his own chambers in the Crown Office where he had all the time and all the records available to re-acquaint himself, if need be, of the charges of which he claimed he had no knowledge.  Then again, this could have been just a play on words, given that Lord Rodger was elevated to the bench exactly one week earlier.   But why play games?  Obviously, Lord Mackay of Drumadoon, the new Lord Advocate could not “re-acquaint” himself with the charges (although he could have “acquainted” himself with them), but it was Lord Rodger whom I cited to give evidence.

(4)  -  So not only is it ridiculous to accept that the Lord Advocate asked the Procurator Fiscal to act on his behalf, but it is also inconceivable that Sheriff McNeill asked the Procurator Fiscal to ask that he be excused, because Sheriff McNeill sent me a letter with a health certificate attached, dated 9 November 1995 in which the doctor certified that Sheriff McNeill "will be unable to attend court until the end of December '95". LINK

(5)  -  Irrespective of these contradictions, the petition to excuse these witnesses was accepted by Sheriff Richard John Dinwoodie Scott.

(6)  -  Fergus Christie and Robbie Burnett, partners with Drummond Miller WS and agents for the poll tax officer who uttered the false "Oath by Creditor", produced by Graham Ritchie on 11 October 1994 LINK, almost two years after the bankruptcy was railroaded through the court illegally, did not turn up at court to give evidence; nor did they petition the court to be excused.   This was ignored by Sheriff Scott.

(7)  -  When Graham Ritchie, the (pretended) trustee, took the witness stand, I was told by Sheriff Scott that I was not allowed to cross-examine him about the sequestration, yet the sequestration had the all-important causal connection with the charges I faced.   Even though I was aware that the Crown has a legal duty not to accept hole-and-corner proceedings, I was by now thinking: "Why bother with the preliminaries; why not just find me guilty and be done with it?"

(8)   -  After the trial I was found guilty and fined £100.00.   I will not go into the details of the trial at this time as it is covered in some depth in the submissions of my appeal, which I relate to hereinafter LINK. But what I will say at this time is that the proceedings was a blatant "trial-by-ambush" because Sheriff Scott would not allow me to refer to the submissions in my defence or to talk about the sequestration or the Oath by Creditor.  His words resembled that of a mobster lawyer.  I was forced to enter the contest with one hand tied behind my back.  On the other hand, Sheriff Scott allowed Graham Ritchie a free rein to refer to any and every loaded question the fiscal saw fit to ask, despite objections from me that he was asking leading questions, questions suggesting their own answers. The fiscal was, to all intents and purposes, allowed to provide his own testimony.

(9)  -  Perhaps one of the reasons I was gagged was that in the inventory of productions that Graham Ritchie produced as evidence, he inadvertently included at Page 44 an "unsigned" Oath by Creditor.  But I was told again in no uncertain terms by Sheriff Scott that I was not to mention the Oath by Creditor.  The only compelling reason for curbing free speech is a clear and present danger to democracy.  This was no threat to democracy.  The juxtaposition of this is that Graham Ritchie was unrestricted and spoke freely about the sequestration, and indeed, the fiscal was allowed not only to freely ask questions about the sequestration, but, as mentioned above, to provide his own testimony.  Given the opportunity, I could have exposed  Graham Ritchie's want of veracity and proved that the truth was the exact opposite of his testimony.   I could even have used his inventory of productions with the "unsigned" Oath by Creditor to cement my defence, but I was unceremoniously warned by Sheriff Scott not to refer to it.  What took place was not a trial, but a lynching.

21.11.95   -  I sent in my appeal application to the Sheriff Clerk's Office for a stated case for the "Opinion of the High Court".

27.11.95   -  This was the official date assigned to begin the two years deferment of the discharge date.

29.12.95  -  I received the stated case from Sheriff Scott dated 22 December 1995 regarding my appeal to the High Court.

11.01.96  -  The Procurator Fiscal's Office sent me a letter intimating that the Crown has no adjustments to make in the stated case.

16.01.96  -  I received Sheriff Scott's principal stated case and posted it off to the Clerk of Justiciary.

14.03.96  -  The Sheriff Clerk's Office sent me a letter claiming I was in default of payment of the financial penalty and that if I do not pay the arrears within seven days I may be required to attend a Fines Enquiry Court when an alternative sentence of imprisonment may be imposed, notwithstanding I had appealed against the conviction.

05.05.96  -  This is the date appointed for the hearing of appeal against the conviction by Sheriff Scott.  Just after lunch I was told that my hearing was adjourned until 25 November 1996 as it was anticipated that the hearing would be lengthy due to the extent of my written submissions. LINK

25.06.96  -  Agents for the pursuer in the civil case enrolled a motion in the Court of Session to recall the sist of 9 May 1995 on the basis that legal aid had been granted to the second defender, and informed me that the cause would be restored to the Adjustment Roll for a period of four weeks. LINK

27.06.96  -  The Lord Ordinary Lord MacLean recalled the sist on the unopposed motion of the pursuer. LINK    This was "nine months" after my wife had been informed by her solicitor (i.e., on 18 September 1995) that the second defender's Legal Aid Certificate had been extended. LINK   The legal beavers behind the scenes were obviously in a quandary trying to decide on the best way to proceed, if they wanted to proceed at all, with this millstone around their necks.

24.07.96  -  The Lord Ordinary Lord Prosser continued the adjustments of the Record until 21 August 1996. LINK   These law lords have no objections to interminable lawsuits.  It seems to be a slow expensive British constitutional kind of thing.

21.08.96  -  The Lord Ordinary Lord Prosser, on the unopposed motion of the pursuer, continued adjustments of the Record until 18 September 1996. LINK  Another continuation for adjustments!

13.09.96   -  In a Note of Adjustments of the Cause, agents for the pursuer for once acknowledged the truth when they claimed that the offer made by my wife's mother on 9 May 1995 to pay the spurious debt "was communicated verbally and in writing by agents on her behalf", but lied when further claiming that "the pursuer's agents informed the second defender's agents that it was unacceptable". LINK   It was a barefaced lie because the FIRST time the pursuer's agents so much as acknowledged that an offer had been made to pay the phoney debt was in this selfsame Note of Adjustments, "16 months AFTER the offer was made". LINK

(2)  -  Yet another intriguing issue arose.   Agents for the pretended trustee, Graham Ritchie, perhaps as a threat to dispirit me from remaining steadfast in my righteous stance, appended to their Note of Adjustments a dubious list of what was referred to as the "Trustee's Statement of Expenses".  It concerned alleged expenses incurred by Graham Ritchie "From 26 May 1995 to 23 November 1996", amounting to £16,589.39.  Of course these self-imposed alleged expenses resulted from and after : (1) the offer was made by my wife's mother to pay the pretended debt; (2) the pretended creditor had left the employment of the council, therefore had no further interest in the pretended debt; (3) agents on behalf of Graham Ritchie had unilaterally requested a motion at the Options Hearing in the Sheriff Court on 12 April 1995 that the case be remitted to the Court of Session LINK; hence the pursuer was the prime mover and material cause of nurturing the subsequent self-imposed expenses, just as he also was in the first two instances; and (4) Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole, on 12 April 1995, "having heard counsel for the pursuer in respect of the question of expenses, refused same", adding "any question of expenses will be determined by the Court of Session" LINK.  This was totally ignored.  It is also a blatant attempt to extort.

(3)  -  To demonstrate one of Graham Ritchie's lesser crimes, but a crime nevertheless, he itemised a charge of £70.20 in his "Statement of Expenses" for a property valuation by D. M. Hall of my family home.   However, no one but no one valued the property of my family home on behalf of Graham Ritchie.   So not only is he a contemptible liar, he is also a worthless extortionist.

(4)  -  I believe that Graham Ritchie's production of this "Statement of Expenses" was just a ploy to try to frighten me into complying with all the foregoing skulduggery.   Moreover, he was doing so with the assistance of agents for the second defender, supposedly acting on her behalf, for her well-being.

18.09.96   -  Lady Cosgrove, the Lord Ordinary, on the unopposed motion of the second defender, further continued the adjustments of the Record until 9 October 1996. LINK  Again another continuation for adjustments!

07.10.96   -  Graham Ritchie, the sham trustee, sent me a letter stating: "My account of intromission have been audited by the Accountant in Bankruptcy who has at the same time issued his determination fixing the amounts of outlays and remuneration payable to me for my work as permanent trustee.
“I enclose a copy of a circular which I have sent to ‘all known creditors’ [emphasis mine] and should point out that you have a similar right of appeal.  Please note that payment of my remuneration will be made from the estate and this is not a request for payment.”   How magnanimous of the man.   At least Dick Turpin wore a mask, as the old adage went.

(2)  -  The circular attached to this letter showed that the Accountant in Bankruptcy George Leslie Kerr, had fixed Graham Ritchie's account of intromission at £1,950.00 (exclusive of VAT) covering the period 25 November 1994 to 25 May 1995.

(3)   -  This tells us a great deal about the sinister operations of Graham Ritchie:

(a)  To give him the benefit of the doubt, for the sake of this single argument, that his appointment as permanent trustee was not done by way of a stage-managed illegal process, and that a legitimate creditor actually existed, how on earth could it cost £1,950.00 to send one circular to ONE known creditor?  That is to say, on 25 September 1997, in response to a query by me on 22 September 1997, Graham Ritchie would provide me with a list “of all known creditors”, which detailed the sum total of one purported solitary creditor, namely, Lothian Regional Council, 500 Gorgie Road, Edinburgh EH11 3YJ.  It has to be asked, therefore: “Did Graham Ritchie personally deliver the circular - via a worldwide trip on Concorde?"  How else could it cost £1,950.00 to send one circular a couple of miles to Lothian Regional Council?  Furthermore, Ian Rogers, the bygone Poll Tax officer, was the purported creditor on all legal documents, not Lothian Regional Council.
(b)  To refuse him the benefit of the doubt, Graham Ritchie was appointed interim trustee in a cash-and-carry kangaroo court after an invalid stage-managed process, so could not by any stretch of the imagination be called a lawfully appointed trustee.
(c)  Ian M Rogers’ claim was overridden and nullified by Graham Ritchie’s expenses in the first six months of the sequestration, so Ian Rogers would no longer have the remotest interest in the phoney debt.
(d)  The job of the pretended creditor, Ian Rogers as poll tax officer became redundant on 5 April 1993, so he no longer had any interest in the falsely attested debt. LINK  Since Ian Rogers’ name, and his name only, appeared on every legal (sic) document pertaining to the creditor/debtor scenario, and since there is no substitute poll tax officer for a tax or job that no longer exists, no one, therefore, can claim to be a substitute or successor creditor.
(e)  Considering I had included in my Defence in the Closed Record that Graham Ritchie had refused to accept my wife’s mother’s offer on 9 May 1995 to pay the sham debt LINK, enabling him to accrue further expenses indefinitely, he realised he would ultimately have to explain these dubious dealings in court, so more recently, but almost a year down the gravy train line (7 October 1996) he belatedly produced a letter to show that the Accountant in Bankruptcy had fixed an account of intromission in his favour to cover that period. LINK  Why did he not produce it at the time instead of leaving it for almost a year if it did in fact exist?  That would have warded off any dubiety.  The reason he did not produce it was that it did not exist.   He had to get the Accountant in Bankruptcy to cover his tracks. He even overlooked the fact that his final date of closure for that particular account was 25 May 1995, overlapping the date the offer was made to pay the (bogus) debt by sixteen days.  Knowing the offer had been made, he chose to ignore it so to stoke up the furnace on his elevated monorail gravy train.
(f)  Forty-three days before the closing date for which Graham Ritchie had claimed outlays and remuneration (i.e., 25 May 1995), he had his motion accepted in the Sheriff Court (i.e., 12 April 1995) to remit the Cause to the Court of Session. LINK  This also was but another part of the modus operandi to extend the journey of the gravy-train.
(g)  At the time of accepting the motion for a remit to the Court of Session (12 April 1995), Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole refused the question of expenses by agents for Graham Ritchie, saying that “any question of expenses will be determined by the Court of Session” LINK, so this claim for outlays and remuneration is another instance of attempted extortion.
(h)  I was currently in the process of challenging the validity of the original sequestration in both the Court of Session and in my appeal to the High Court of Justiciary, the latter being against the decision on 15 November 1995 by Sheriff Richard John Dinwoodie Scott who found me guilty of refusing without reasonable excuse to deliver to the interim trustee a list of assets and liabilities LINK, so it follows that if I won any of these cases, the question of expenses for Graham Ritchie, even in a legitimate process, would not arise, therefore Graham Ritchie was putting the cart before the horse, attempting to extort expenses while the principal issues were sub judice.
(i)   Graham Ritchie ignored the fact that the period for which he was claiming outlays and remuneration was long after the deferment of the discharge date had been illegally railroaded through the Sheriff Court.   The reasons it was illegal railroaded are mentioned hereinbefore on 12 October 1995 at paragraphs (5) and (6). LINK

(4)   -  So not only was the stage-managed bankruptcy railroaded through the court on a fast track by a politically corrupt process, but the deferment of the discharge date was railroaded through the "wrong" court, making the decree valueless, "there being no way of enforcing it"!

09.10.96   -  Lord Nimmo-Smith, the Lord Ordinary, closed the Record on the Initial Writ and Defences No's 1, 8,and 9 of the remitted Process. LINK

(2)   -  Agents for the pursuer, Graham Ritchie, submitted 5 Pleas-in-Law in the Process, instead of the previous "4" they had submitted in the Sheriff Court.  The additional one was to be the most significant factor in the entire sequence of events.  It was added specifically to prevent my defence being heard in court, suppressing the truth, hushing up the catalogue of extensive corruption and illegalities, and shielding it from public scrutiny.  The crime protection syndicate would know that if I were to win the criminal "equivalent" in my appeal in the High Court of Justiciary , the civil case in the Court of Session would automatically fall as they were intrinsically connected .LINK  This sneaky ploy was timely to prevent me from testifying this to the Court of Session in the event of me winning my appeal.  It could ridicule the entire civil process that went beforehand if I was disburdened at the High Court of Appeal in under two months time of the conviction of failing without reasonable excuse to deliver to the interim trustee a list of my assets and liabilities.  Particularly so given that the law lords would have considered the depth of the submitted terms of my appeal prior to the hearing.

(3)   -  The fifth appended Plea-in-Law stated: "The averments of the First Defender being 'irrelevant et separatim lacking in specification', they should not be remitted to probation."   For many years the legal authorities have used this wide-ranging charge as a convenient catch-all mechanism with which to stifle justifiable but unwelcome Defences.  Again, this was designed to prevent me at the Proof hearing from delivering the coup de gráce in the event of, inter alia, me being vindicated at my appeal in the criminal case, as touched upon above.

(4)  -  Of course, this additional Plea-in-Law was fundamentally flawed and a ridiculous proposition.  Rather than "lacking in specification", my Defence contained a plethora of specification, with the condescendence (a list of the facts) alone consisting of over 14,000 words, exposing everything that went beforehand.

(5)  -  Having read the Closed Record, I immediately became aware that counsel for the second defender, my wife, was in cahoots with counsel for the pursuer and was acting contrary to her best interests.  That is to say, the pursuer claimed at "Condescendence No. II" that "the whole estate of the first defender vests as at date of sequestration in the 'pursuer as permanent trustee'.", and counsel for my wife answered it: "Admitted".  Yet counsel for my wife were made fully aware how and why the sequestration was invalid; how the stage-managed process was illegally railroaded through without allowing me to show cause why it should not be awarded, and how the court failed to ensure the Oath by Creditor proviso was adhered to.

(6)  -  Other instances of collusion filter through, illustrating that counsel for my wife, the second defender, were conveniently ignoring the subject matter of the case: the fact that by no stretch of the imagination could I be deemed bankrupt by a legitimate process.  Counsel for the second defender were therefore hostile to the best interests of "both" the defenders and their family, so should not be trusted.  To all appearances they were in cahoots with the vagabond pursuer, Graham Ritchie, and with the affiliated crime protection syndicate.

11.10.96   -  I wrote to the Sheriff Clerk Depute informing him that I believed Graham Ritchie had conned the Accountant in Bankruptcy into auditing his account of intromission, flying in the face of Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole's declaration at the Options Hearing on 12 April 1995, when the Cause was remitted to the Court of Session, that any question of expenses would be determined by the higher court. LINK  And this is not taking into account "Actor debet sequi forum rei", in that Graham Ritchie, the pursuer, "was raising an action against me, as the pretended debtor or obligant, and was not doing so before the forum or court to the jurisdiction of which I was subject at the time (i.e., the Court of Session). LINK

(2)   -  I also asked to be remunerated for the £42.00 that I submitted with my appeal on 31 December 1994 against the pursuer, Graham Ritchie's attempts to force the sale of my family home. LINK  Since the case was not to be heard in the Sheriff Court, having been remitted to the Court of Session on a motion by agents for the pursuer, I was entitled to a refund of the money I was charged by the Sheriff Court to lodge that appeal.

16.10.96  -  The Clerk of Justiciary sent me a letter advising that the hearing of appeal in the criminal case against the conviction by Sheriff Scott, which is due to be heard on 23 October 1996, is once again postponed.  Both the criminal and the civil courts must have been in unsystematic turmoil with the web of complexities surrounding the cases, and did not know how, where and when to proceed with them.

18.10.96   -  I had not received a reply from the Sheriff Clerk Depute to my letter of 11 October 1996 , so I wrote again, requesting the refund of my £42.00. LINK

23.10.96   -  I wrote to the Accountant in Bankruptcy with a word to the wise about Graham Ritchie's part in the abuse of our legal system and mentioned: "I am sure your were unwittingly drawn into their criminality [Graham Ritchie and his cohorts in the covin] and would otherwise not wish to be party to such depravity, which is why, in the interests of natural justice and, indeed, man-made law, I feel I must give you the opportunity to 'unfix' your determinations and [to] inform ... Graham Ritchie that the amounts of outlays and remuneration are a feature of his own abuse of our legal system."

05.11.96  -  Since I did not receive a reply from the Accountant in Bankruptcy to my letter of 23 October 1996 , I wrote again saying that if I did not receive a response within a reasonable timescale I would find it necessary to complain to the Lord Advocate and, if necessary, the appropriate Ombudsman. LINK

06.11.96   -  I had still not received a reply from the Sheriff Clerk Depute to my letters of 11 October 1996 LINK and 18 October 1996 LINK so I wrote again, informing him that if I still did not receive a response within a moderate timescale I would complain to the Lord Advocate and, if necessary, thereafter to the European Commission of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms in Strasbourg.   I again requested a refund of my £42.00 in respect of Sheriff Court fees.

08.11.96   -  In a letter from J G Stirling, Assistant Correspondence Officer in the Office of the Accountant in Bankruptcy, he let it be known that he was under the misapprehension that the pretended trustee, Graham Ritchie's "accounts covering the period 25 November 1994 to 25 May 1995 were audited, and his fee fixed by the Accountant in Bankruptcy in accordance with the requirements placed on him by Section 63 of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985".

(2)  -  Section 63 relates entirely to determinations by a sheriff, unless he/she chooses to remit the case to the Court of Session, not to determinations by the Accountant in Bankruptcy.  The significance of this is illustrated hereinafter at 22 November 1996. LINK

(3)  -  Of course, my case had already been remitted to the Court of Session by Sheriff Poole on 12 April 1995 LINK so, as mentioned at 7 October 1996, particularly paragraphs (4) LINK, Graham Ritchie ignored "Actor debet sequi forum rei". LINK

(4)  -  Thus the Accountant in Bankruptcy audited and fixed Graham Ritchie's accounts under Section 63 of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 when he had no authority under that section to do so.

(5)  -  Indeed, neither did any sheriff have authority under Section 63, or any other section of the Bankruptcy Act to make a determination in this affair for the reasons again outlined at paragraph (3) involving "Actor debet sequi forum rei".

13.11.96  -  The Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah B Armstrong wrote to me acknowledging my letters of 11 October 1996 LINK, 18 October 1996 LINK and 6 November 1996 LINK, saying she would be in touch shortly.  She did not address my request for a refund of my £42.00.

13.11.96  -  A. Reid of the Justiciary Office wrote to me advising that the new date of the hearing of appeal in the criminal case is 6 December 1996. LINK

14.11.96   -  I wrote to J G Stirling, Assistant Correspondence Officer in the Office of the Accountant in Bankruptcy, asking him which unwitting sheriff was involved under Section 63 of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 in having outlays and remuneration fixed in favour of Graham Ritchie, the pretended trustee, in my absence and without intimation.

(2)   -  I also mentioned that there was not one procedural course open to me in the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 to appeal against a sheriff's decision because there is not one available section under which I could appeal against the illegal imposition of the bankruptcy, or against the subsequent illegal deferment of the discharge date, or against the attempts to extort illegal outlays and remuneration of £1,950.00 for sending one circular to one purported creditor, a creditor who, to all intents and purposes, no longer existed.  And that is not taking into account the so-called trustee Graham Ritchie's refusal to accept the offer by a third party to pay the pretended debt; and, again, it is not taking into account "Actor debet sequi forum rei". LINK

(3)  -  The unavailability of competent legislation in the above circumstances, would circumscribe any sheriff from competently, or legally, presiding over my appeal.

15.11.96  -  The Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah B Armstrong wrote to me enclosing a "certified copy interlocutor" for my "information and attention.  The interlocutor was signed by Sheriff Macphail and it stated that I was allowed 21 days to appeal against the determination of the Accountant in Bankruptcy, advising me under which section of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 I should appeal. LINK   Neither Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah B Armstrong, nor Sheriff Macphail had taken into account "Actor debet sequi forum rei ". LINK

(2)  -  Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah B Armstrong failed again to address my request for a refund of my £42.00.

20.11.96   -  I wrote to the Sheriff Clerk Depute expressing my concern about the Act under which Sheriff Macphail advised me I should appeal.  I also wrote, as I had done on 14 November 1996 to the Assistant Correspondence Officer in the Office of the Accountant in Bankruptcy: LINK
"[A point] I must raise is about your statement that the Debtor [sic] wishes to appeal against a Determination by the Accountant in Bankruptcy which was issued under Section 53(3)(a)(ii) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985; and being further satisfied that such an appeal, being an appeal under Section 53(6)(b) of the said Act ..."
"The trouble is, however; that particular section seems incompetent to deal with my appeal.  In fact, there does not appear to be one procedural course open to me because there is not one section available in the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 under which I can competently appeal against the illicit imposition of the bankruptcy, against the illicit imposition of the subsequent deferment [of the discharge date], or against the attempts to extort outlays and remuneration thereof.
“It follows, therefore, that the pretended trustee does not have a legal procedural course open to him either, because he too does not have a relevant section in the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 under which he could competently apply to extort outlays and remuneration for a stage-managed process that illicitly imposed bankruptcy on me, or, for that matter, the subsequent illicitly imposed deferment [of the discharge date].
“By the same token, an incorruptible sheriff is similarly circumscribed by the unavailability of competent legislation to decree bankruptcy, the subsequent deferment, and then outlays and remuneration for the stage-managed corrupt processes.
“If, on the other hand, you decide that Section 53(3)(a)(ii) and Section 53(6)(b) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, or any other Section of that Act for that matter, can competently deal with my exposé of the corrupt process that created the railroaded bankruptcy and subsequent deferment, and then the fixing of illicit outlays and remuneration in my absence and without intimation, I would be much obliged if you treated this letter as an appeal and act accordingly.
“It must be remembered that, even if the bankruptcy had not been illicitly imposed, the pretended creditor Ian M Rogers, former CCRO, long ago left the employment of the now nonexistent Lothian Regional Council.  So, can someone explain who was masquerading as the purported creditor at the time Graham Ritchie applied for the deferment, bearing in mind that he applied for it long after Ian M Rogers left the employment of the Council? LINK   Indeed who is masquerading as the purported creditor now?”  No one legally can!

22.11.96   -  J G Stirling, Assistant Correspondence Officer in the Office of the Accountant in Bankruptcy, replied to my letter of 14 November 1996, and changed the goalposts regarding Section 63 of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985. LINK  Given that I had found him out about Graham Ritchie's accounts covering the period 25 November 1994 to 25 May 1995 were audited, and his fee fixed by the Accountant in Bankruptcy in accordance with the requirements placed on him by the wrong section of the 1985 Act (i.e., Section 63), as mentioned at 8 November 1996, and had asked him the name of the sheriff involved, J G Stirling glibly said: "I regret that my previous letter incorrectly stated that the permanent trustee's fees, etc, had been fixed in accordance with Section 63 of the 1985 Act: the reference should, of course, have been Section 53 of the Act."
But why say, "of course"?  And why just rattle off any section number, assuming it will not be checked?  Why act like a pleb then treat the public like plebs?"

(2)  -  Whatever the answers are, it is inconceivable that a professional Assistant Correspondence Officer in the Office of the Accountant in Bankruptcy could make such a monumental blunder, quoting the wrong section of an Act that is basically the tools of his trade, and on which his entire working life depends.  But for this particular case it was very convenient to admit fault and change the goalposts because he would not have expected me to bother checking the pertinent legislation and catch him out.

(3)   -  However, this cover-up helped to create another bloomer because Section 53 states: "Within 2 weeks after the end of an accounting period, the permanent trustee shall in respect of that period submit ... to the Accountant in Bankruptcy (a) his accounts of his intromission ... and (b) a claim for the outlays reasonably incurred by him and for his remuneration."  Apart from Graham Ritchie's outlays and remuneration of £1,950.00 being by no stretch of the imagination reasonably incurred, for the reasons mentioned at 14 November 1996, paragraph (2), but his accounting period claimed to cover the period 25 November 1994 to 25 May 1995.  His letter dated 7 October 1995 indicated that he submitted his account of intromission to the Accountant in Bankruptcy a full sixteen months "outwith" the two-week time-bar period stipulated by Section 53 of the 1985 Act. LINK  The only definition left to consider is that Graham Ritchie was operating an agenda all of his own, outside the law, and the Accountant in Bankruptcy was acquiescing in this agenda.  It was not 16 hours, 16 days, or 16 weeks beyond the time-bar period (all of which would be time-barred, in any event) but sixteen months beyond it.  This was not sleight-of-hand deception, this was blatant gang robbery.

(4)  -  "Acquiescence" in law, as mentioned hereinbefore, states that failure to object to something, such as an infringement of a right, is taken as signifying acceptance of or consent  of that infringement. LINK The implication of this is that the Accountant in Bankruptcy accepted, consented and fixed Graham Ritchie's outlays and remuneration without legal justification, thereby acquiescing in and collaborating with an illegality.

(5)  -  I did not reply to this letter until 7 February 1997. LINK

25.11.96   -  The hearing of the adjourned appeal against the conviction on 15 November 1995 by Sheriff Scott, of failing without reasonable excuse to deliver to the interim trustee a list of my assets and liabilities LINK, was once again adjourned until 6 December 1996. LINK  They were having grave difficulty deciding what to do with this case.

26.11.96  -  Acknowledging receipt of my letter of 20 November 1996 , the Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah B Armstrong advised me that if I wanted to appeal I should follow the procedure prescribed in the interlocutor and that she could not comment on any of the other matters mentioned in that letter. LINK  She did not address the request in my earlier letters about refunding the £42.00 I paid to have my appeal heard in the Sheriff Court in respect of Sheriff Court fees.

03.12.96  -  I wrote back to the Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah B Armstrong, reiterating the very relevant details mentioned in my letter of 20 November 1996 about the unavailability of competent legislation, which required a lot more than just "comment". LINK

= = = = = = = = = = My Appeal to the High Court of Justiciary = = = = = = = = = =

06.12.96   -  My appeal against the conviction in the criminal court by Sheriff Richard John Dinwoodie Scott was presided over in the High Court of Justiciary by the Lord Justice-Clerk Ross, and Lords Morison and Cowie.  All three had a copy of my submissions before them.  The following is the verbatim terms of my appeal:

(1)  -  "The matters which is desired to bring under review are that a miscarriage of justice resulted following on the pretended Complaint against me by the Regional Procurator Fiscal Robert Ferguson Lees, and that the outcome of the trial was influenced by prejudice and/or oppression and/or malice aforethought.  Indeed, the entire proceedings was tantamount to 'trial-by-ambush' since I was dispossessed of my defence, a fact I put to Sheriff Scott and to the court on more than one occasion.  It was not me but the justice system that was on trial and the justice system failed miserably.  I was, in effect, deemed guilty of a pretended charge and fined £100.00 by Sheriff Scott for not complying with lawlessness.

(2)  -  "The sheriff and the fiscal were provided with foreknowledge of my defence because I had nothing to fear from the truth.  [As Rabbie Burns said: 'Here's freedom to them that wad read; Here's freedom to them that wad write; There's nane ever fear'd, that the truth would be heard, But them whom the truth would indict.']  Similarly, I am providing them with foreknowledge of my appeal for a review because I have nothing to fear from the truth.

(3)  -  "I also appeal under the terms of Section 442 (a), (b) and (c) of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1975 against, respectively, (a) the relevancy of the complaint; (b) irregularity in procedure; and (c) error of the court in points of law.

(4)  -  "The complaint has no basis in fact.  It put the cart before the horse, so to speak, because the charge emanated directly from the political corruption of figures in the legal system, and therefore rendered the charge following thereon a catastrophic injustice, illustrating that the corrupt figures responsible for stage-managing the sequence of illegal events enjoy jurisdiction immunity.  It is simply the case that natural justice, the law, and particularly myself, are being sacrificed on the altar of lawlessness to protect politically corrupt deviants in the legal system.

(5)  -  "The solitary criterion that the court had to face was whether or not I had a 'reasonable excuse' for not complying with the requests of the pretended trustee, Graham Ritchie.  I provided a whole catalogue of corruption containing not only 'reasonable excuses' but indisputable 'reasons' for not complying.  I was only required to call upon any one instance to vindicate my innocence, but, in the public interest, I call on them all.  Sheriff Scott and the Procurator Fiscal Depute are fully aware of them, so they know I had no case to answer, but in order to effect a guilty verdict, they combined to exhibit a veneer of a trial and render my defence nonexistent.

(6)  -  "A Complaint was levelled against me strictly to protect politically and/or criminally corrupt people in the legal system.   The sheriff who presided over the trial, Sheriff R J D Scott, together with the Regional Procurator Fiscal Robert Ferguson Lees, and the Procurator Fiscal Depute must also be fully aware of the catalogue of corruption that went beforehand - and let us not kid ourselves on about that.  Acquiescence, in law, is taken as signifying consent or acceptance of the lawlessness, and these people are acquiescing in all the corruption that abounded beforehand.

(7)  -  "By claiming that my defence is irrelevant, what the sheriff and fiscal are actually saying is that the corruption of sheriffs and other characters in the legal system is irrelevant.  Since the earlier corruption that surfaced in the civil courts was the root cause of the charge that was subsequently brought against me, it follows that the earlier corruption supercedes the charge that was brought against me as a result of that corruption.  You simply cannot put the cart before the horse.   So if my defence is irrelevant, the law itself is irrelevant.  The root cause and more serious and far-reaching corruption should have been addressed before other people in the legal system were dragged into the quagmire of corruption, bringing the justice system into even deeper disrepute.  I told Sheriff Scott: ‘What we are talking about here is a conspiracy in the legal system; and you cannot fight a conspiracy if you say it doesn’t exist.’  Where other people are sadly allowing themselves to be soaked into that quagmire of corruption, I most certainly am not allowing myself to be soaked into it.

(8)  -  "In relation to Section 442 (a) of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1975, and the relevancy of the Complaint, Sheriff Scott had the audacity to talk of the law having to be obeyed, but he was, in substance, being conveniently selective as to what laws should be obeyed and what laws should not, and when they should be obeyed and when they should not.  For instance, by declaring my defence irrelevant Sheriff Scott, in effect, was also declaring irrelevant the political corruption of two sheriffs, i.e., Andrew M Bell and Peter G B McNeill, who presided over the earlier unlawfully stage-managed civil proceedings which sowed the seeds of the present criminal charge.

(9)  -  "The victim of all the corruption in this case was charged with a criminal offence by the procurator fiscal for simply refusing to remain silent and accepting all the consequences that go along with being a victim.  It is akin to ordering a rape victim to heed additional demands of a rapist.

(10)  -  "In any event, as far as Sheriff Scott is concerned, the law comes into effect only after the crime has been committed.   And it is effective only from a date after which the horse has already bolted, as it were.  In my case, this was the day after I was illegally made bankrupt.   Sheriff Scott simply did not wish me to refer to the illegalities that were the root cause of my so-called bankruptcy, illegalities that were the root cause of the Complaint being set in motion by the Regional Procurator Fiscal in the first place.

(11)  -  "The Procurator Fiscal Depute used as supportive arguments or as matters of persuasion previous cases which bore no relation to my case because the cases in his arguments did not result from the corruption of sheriffs in the Sheriff Court.  The fiscal at my trial used those arguments to make it seem as though he had a relevant case to state and to divert a discourse from the real issues.  The Regional Procurator Fiscal Robert Ferguson Lees and his Depute at the trial both know beyond any shadow of a doubt that I have no case to answer but they are not big enough, moral enough, or law-abiding enough to break the chain of corruption that has prevailed hitherto.

(12)  -  "In relation to Section 442 (b) of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1975, there were irregularities in procedure because even though I had requested a jury trial, my request was refused.  I requested a jury trial in a letter to the Sheriff Court on 4 November 1995 because, I informed the Sheriff Clerk's Office, I feared the proceedings would be a 'trial-by-ambush', fears that were proved justified. LINK  I also stated in that letter, as I did in court, that no jury in the world would convict me of the pretended charge.  However, I was not granted a trial by jury but only a 'trial-by-ambush' with no defence permissible.

(13)  -  "Referring again to the letter to the Sheriff Clerk's Office, I also pointed out that it would be an impediment to justice for the trial to proceed in the Sheriff Court when the civil equivalent, which cannot be separated from the subsequent 'criminal' case, is lying in the Court of Session.  It was remitted to the Court of Session precisely because the sheriff [Sheriff Isobel Anne Poole] felt it was not competent for the Sheriff Court to preside over a case were the integrity of two sheriffs, Andrew Bell and Peter McNeill, were being called into question. LINK Perhaps the reason I was precluded from presenting my defence in the criminal case was that it was in fact believed by Sheriff Scott that the Sheriff Court was an incompetent tribunal to deal with it, and perhaps that is why he decided that the trial had to be stage-managed to compensate for that incompetence.

(14)  -  "There was also the implication that if I win my case in the Court of Session the decision in the Sheriff Court will automatically fall and even look ridiculous.  This fact was put to Sheriff Scott but it did not deter him from his agenda of fashioning a guilty verdict.   For these reasons alone this appeal should be accepted.

(15)  -  "In a hearing of a petition before the trial proper, the Procurator Fiscal Depute asked the court on behalf of the Regional Procurator Fiscal Robert Ferguson Lees, Sheriffs Andrew Bell and Peter McNeill, and Lord Alan Rodger of Earlsferry, the former Lord Advocate, to excuse them from giving evidence.  But Sheriff Peter McNeill himself did not intimate that he wished to be excused.  In fact, he sent me a letter with a health certificate attached, dated 9 November 1995, in which the doctor certified that Sheriff McNeill 'will be unable to attend court until the end of December '95.' LINK  The former Lord Advocate, for his part, also did not wish the Procurator Fiscal Depute to petition the court on his behalf because I received a letter from his secretary on the morning of the trial, which stated: 'I am writing to inform you that the Lord Advocate has no knowledge of the charges which you face and is unable to attend court to appear as a defence witness.'  So what was the Procurator Fiscal Depute trying to pull here?  It seems a prime example of the fox investigating the chicken; or the victimisation of those who do not need investigated by those who do.

(16)  -  "The witnesses I requested, Lord Rodger aside, it would appear, were privy to and therefore active in the political corruption - by way of acquiescence and/or by art and part - but were excused from giving evidence by Sheriff Scott in that petition to him from the Regional Procurator Fiscal.  On that account, my written submissions exposing their corruption should have been accepted as confirmatory evidence at the trial and not ignored.

(17)  -  "Once the Procurator Fiscal Depute's petition to excuse the witnesses was accepted by Sheriff Scott, Sheriff Scott asked me if I still wished to go to trial, indicating that I did not have much chance of winning my case.  I informed him that it was still my intention to proceed with the trial.  Before the trial proper began the court proceedings was adjourned on three occasions - for approximately thirty minutes each time.  This gave me the opportunity to get hold of an appeal form before the first witness gave evidence.  I had gathered from Sheriff Scott's earlier insinuations, and from his decision to excuse witnesses, that I had been predetermined guilty as charged.

(18)  -  "In relation to Section 442 (c) of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1975, even though I had sound points to show that the proceedings were time-barred, excuses were made to ignore the fact.  By providing details that the proceedings were time-barred, I was, for all practical purposes, presenting Sheriff Scott and the Procurator Fiscal Depute with an opportunity to dispense with the case without becoming embroiled in the defilement of the justice system through acquiescing in a politically corrupt scandal.  It was a noble gesture considering the persecution I have faced since 1989, but the chance of an out was not grasped by Sheriff Scott or by the Procurator Fiscal Depute.

(19)  -  "Section 331 subsection 1 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1975 states that proceedings in respect of any statute must commence within six months after the [alleged] contravention occurred.  Subsection 3 states that proceedings shall be deemed commenced on the date which a warrant is executed without undue delay.  In my case, a warrant must have been executed before 17 February 1995 because that was the date I was cautioned and charged by DC John Crawford and DC Sandy Forrest. LINK  This factor alone would make the proceedings time-barred.   But the contravention referred to in Section 331 is deemed to have occurred seven days after 31 December 1992, which was the date that the pretended trustee Graham Ritchie warned me to provide him with a list of my assets and liabilities within that seven day period, a request with which I did not comply. LINK  This makes it time-barred by almost two years.

(20)  -  "Looking at it from another angle, I received a letter from the pretended trustee on 20 May 1994, telling me, 'I have reported this offence to the Accountant in Bankruptcy as required by s.3 of the same Act [i.e., the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985]', so this would make it time-barred by over a year. LINK  Thereafter, I received a letter from the pretended trustee's solicitor from Dorman Jeffrey & Co. dated 23 November 1994, telling me: 'We have now reported you to the Accountant in Bankruptcy.  You may now be charged by the police.' LINK  This makes it time-barred by almost six months.  Even the date on which the charge sheet chooses to start the counter, i.e., 13 March 1995, is outwith the six-month time-bar period.  So regardless of which date is chosen to start the counter, the proceedings were still time-barred.

(21)  -  "A very strange thing happened when I pointed out the time-bar implication to the court.  The trial proceedings had started but no prosecuting witnesses had yet given testimony.  Sheriff Scott allowed the Procurator Fiscal Depute an adjournment, supposedly to check some past cases for supportive arguments or matters of persuasion which might somehow 'overrule the law of the land' as far as the time-bar rule is concerned.  The fiscal returned over half-an-hour later with obviously no such thing but with a Crown Office document which is supposed to contain conclusive proof of the date that the Lord Advocate acknowledged there was sufficient evidence in his opinion to justify proceedings.  The crucial date was the same as that on the charge sheet, 13 March 1995.  I was shown the document but I promptly handed it back in disgust as it was suspiciously brand new and recently typed up for the purpose.  What else could have held up the fiscal for over half-an-hour?  He would have taken forever if he was trying to find a supportive argument to overrule a parliamentary statute.  Yet that was the reason Sheriff Scott adjourned the proceedings.  And it would only have taken a few minutes to nip across and surreptitiously retrieve a document from his office that he had earlier forgotten to bring to court with him.  But it would take a lot longer to nip across to the Crown Office and get a brand new document printed up for the purpose.

(22)  -  "As mentioned hereinbefore, I had earlier told the court that I received a letter from the Crown Office the selfsame morning of the trial and that the Lord Advocate 'had no knowledge of the charges which you face'.  Sheriff Scott was interested enough to read the letter but basically held that whether or not the Lord Advocate knew about the charges was irrelevant.  But when the six-month time-bar rule appeared on the agenda , all of a sudden Sheriff Scott set great store by the Lord Advocate's documented knowledge 'that there was sufficient evidence etc'.  After the adjournment the fiscal pulled the document out of the hat because no such document existed two days before the trial (13 November 1995) when the Lord Advocate's secretary typed the letter she sent me from the Crown Office, informing me that the Lord Advocate knew nothing of the charges. LINK

(23)  -  "Had the document that the fiscal produced existed before the adjournment it would have been on the file and easily located, but it was not on the file and was not located either by the Lord Advocate's secretary when she wrote to me on the Lord Advocate's behalf, or when the fiscal left the court for a supposedly different purpose, only to return with the brand new document.  If he had the document among his papers before the adjournment he would not have not produced it because it was that document which was used when the trial reconvened to try to justify why the proceedings should not be time-barred.

(24)  -  "Surely the justice system was never meant to function as a covin with operatives conducting themselves in a cloak-and-dagger fashion in order to navigate around the truth to effect a guilty verdict.  It is even worse if you take it into consideration that everyone in the covin knew I had no case to answer.  If that is not contrary to Natural Justice, nothing is!  And that is without considering the six-month time-bar rule.  Having said that, the proceedings still commenced more than six months outside the specified commencement date on the fiscal's newly acquired document, but for the purposes of this case it was not time-barred.

(25)  -  "When the trial got under way, Sheriff Scott ordered that my defence was not to be referred to during cross examination or at any other time during the trial.  It must be remembered at this time that Sheriff Scott was fully aware of the catalogue of political corruption in the legal system which fostered the pretended charge and that I had no case to answer because copies of my defence/exposé had earlier been submitted to both the Regional Procurator Fiscal Robert Ferguson Lees and to the Sheriff Clerk's Office, a copy of which Sheriff Scott had read thoroughly and had a copy in front of him.   So, despite having prior knowledge of these facts, Sheriff Scott still ordered that my defence was NOT to be read out in court, or even referred to during the trial.  In other words I was judicially gagged by further political corruption, yet it is indisputable that there existed a logical and intrinsic relationship between my submitted evidence and the subject matter of the case.  But my entire defence was stymied, just as it has been, systematically, in various civil courts over the past few years.  This is not just an impediment to natural justice, it is a crime against natural justice, and is contrary to the public interest.  The truth became a casualty of institutionalised injustice.  Sheriff Scott would have been as well to have gone through the motions of a trial without my presence.

(26)  -  "The evidence of the Crown's principal witness, the would-be trustee of the pretended sequestration, Graham Ritchie, made it impossible for even the hand of corruption to convict me because he accepted under oath that I had NOT failed to disclose to him 'any material fact', the only criterion contained in the Section under which I was charged and tried.  I had in fact informed Graham Ritchie in a letter of 22 April 1993 that 'I am one of the long, and I mean long, term unemployed and the only assets I have are my soiled underwear'.  LINK  I had previously told him in letters of 2 and 8 February 1993 about these assets and informed him that there was no way he would lay his filthy lawless hands on them. LINK  Be that as it may, Graham Ritchie admitted under oath that I had informed him of these 'assets'.

(27)  -  "To rub salt in the wound the charge had to be changed to fit the pretended crime and to correspond with the stage management of the proceedings.  I was tried under one Section of the law but when all the testimonies had been heard it was found by Sheriff Scott to have been the wrong Section.  The so-called 'impartial' sheriff pointed this out to the Procurator Fiscal Depute, who promptly proposed a motion that it be amended to the one under which Sheriff Scott 'suggested' that I should more properly have been charged.  Despite my protests, Sheriff Scott amended the Complaint from the charge under which I had been tried, but could not be convicted, to the one under which he did convict me.  The charge was amended from the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 Section 19(2)(b) to Section 19(2)(a).  This amendment was crucial for the sheriff to have any chance of trying to justify to an unknowing public gallery his predetermined verdict.  The only excuse he gave was that the two charges carry similar penalties.  Amending the charge after all the evidence has been heard is a distinct contradiction of natural justice and a scandal of cosmic dimensions, keeping in line with all the other lawless proceedings that had transpired beforehand.

(28)  -  "When the would-be trustee, Graham Ritchie was giving testimony he was asked by the Procurator Fiscal Depute about the 'Oath by Creditor', in relation to my pretended sequestration, and Graham Ritchie referred to a falsely uttered 'Oath by Creditor', which he claimed to be authentic.  When I held up the original 'unsigned' Oath by Creditor which invalidates the sequestration and therefore the charge I faced before Sheriff Scott, I was ordered by the sheriff to neither refer to the 'Oath by Creditor' nor to the sequestration.  Under Section 11(1) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 the 'Oath by Creditor' must be sworn by the creditor or a person authorised to act on his behalf before a person entitled to administer the oath, e.g., in the UK a Notary Public (usually a solicitor) or a Justice of the Peace.  But in his eagerness to railroad the sequestration through the court without allowing me the opportunity to show cause why sequestration should not be awarded, Sheriff Peter McNeill failed to ensure that this crucial proviso had not been complied with.

(29)  -  "However, I was ordered not to refer to the 'Oath by Creditor' or to the sequestration, but Graham Ritchie and the fiscal were allowed to refer to it.   Sheriff Scott was blatantly suppressing evidence.  Being in possession of a copy of my defence/exposé, and therefore privy to the terms therein contained, the fiscal pathetically tried to put it to the court that I had the opportunity at the time of sequestration to show cause why it should not be awarded but failed to do so.  Yet he is aware of all the facts but he claimed an exact opposite scenario in the court.  If I had not sent him a copy of the catalogue of political corruption to his office, how on earth could the fiscal possibly know what occurred in the civil court?  Indeed, why did he claim the opposite from the truth to appropriate a pretended conviction?

(30)  -  "Let us look more closely at the fiscal's behaviour.  He petitioned the court successfully to excuse Sheriff Peter McNeill from from giving evidence - without Sheriff McNeill's permission.  He then had the impertinence to make a ridiculous claim that I had the opportunity at the time of the sequestration to show cause why it should not be awarded but failed to do so, yet if Sheriff McNeill had not been excused from giving evidence, and if we accept that he would have told the truth, the fiscal's uncorroborated claim would have been an object of derision.  But since the fiscal's ploy to excuse defence witnesses met with success, it follows that my version of what their testimonies may or may not have been should have logically been more admissible.  After all, it was me and not the fiscal who requested that they appear in court to give testimony.  Which ever way you look at it, the fiscal preferred to eat his cake and have it; he wanted Sheriff McNeill's testimony excluded from the proceedings, then wanted his own fabrications to substitute the testimonies, which he himself was the prime mover in preventing from being heard.

(31)  -  "There were three adjournments of over half-an-hour during the proceedings in which I was involved, yet Sheriff Scott had the colossal gall to say that in the interests of expedition (it should have been 'exploitation') to save taxpayers' money I could not read out the full terms of my defence.  This must be a precedent in British justice and the ultimate example of suppressing evidence and holding prejudice against the accused.  'Trial-by-ambush and dispossession of any defence' was the understatement of the century.

(32)  -  "I have always laid all my cards on the table for scrutiny , even if it meant presenting corrupt people in the legal system with the opportunity to connive to undermine the content of those cards, such is the beauty of remaining steadfast with the truth.  I have done so again and no doubt a case will be stated by unconscionable people to again undermine the truth and to bring deeper into disrepute the soul and conscience of the justice system.

(33)  -  "I have appended to my application for a stated case a copy of my defence in the trial before Sheriff Scott.  As mentioned hereinbefore, the Sheriff Clerk's Office, Sheriff Scott and the Procurator Fiscal's Department were all provided with copies prior to the trial.  That defence, incidentally, is exactly the same as my Answers to Condescendence in the case which is presently lying in the Court of Session.  The verbatim terms are included below [I had also appended 12 x A-4 pages of my Answers to Condescendence from the civil case to my appeal, much of which has been submitted hereinbefore.  I headed that part as 'Reasons For Not Complying With Graham Ritchie of Ernst & Young, Pretended Trustee Of The Railroaded Sequestration'].

(34)  -  "'Reasonable excuses', or rather, 'reasons' for not complying with the pretended trustee's request to provide him with a list of my assets and liabilities will be found in abundance; I required the court to find but one reasonable excuse or reason."

(35)  -  I followed up these written submissions in the Court of Appeal with a copy of my Answers to Condescendence-Exposé in the civil case.

(36)   -  As mentioned at paragraph 1 of this particular chapter, Lord Justice-Clerk Ross and Lords Morison and Cowie all had a copy of the above submissions. LINK  After the hearing of my appeal, and after rather brief deliberations ("brief" considering the amplitude of my submissions), Lord Justice-Clerk Ross told me that the sheriff (Richard John Dinwoodie Scott) was wrong at my trial for not allowing me to challenge the validity of the sequestration, therefore "the conviction is quashed and the appeal upheld".

(37)  -  The implication of this decision is considerable and has obvious knock-on effects for the civil case - or ought to have - given that it has now been officially accepted that I have, among many more important things, "a reasonable excuse for not delivering to the interim trustee a list of assets and liabilities".

(38)  -  Without considering the political and other corruption that abounded, the implication of my upheld appeal should be the nadir for the lawless alliance and put the entire legal issues to bed.  With this result in my arsenal it ought to be the artillery required for me to deliver the coup de gráce at any further proceedings.  But would it?  Read on!

= = = = = = = = = = End Of My Appeal to the High Court of Justiciary = = = = = = = = = =

09.12.96  -  In response to my letter of 3 December 1996, the Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah B Armstrong wrote, stating that Sheriff Macphail claims that I have been fully informed regarding the procedural courses open to me, and in the circumstances he sees no purpose in continuing the correspondence, and therefore regards it as "now closed".

(2)  -  She had still not addressed the request in my earlier letters to refund the £42.00 in respect of Sheriff Court fees.

11.12.96   -  I wrote to the Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah Armstrong, stating: "You say that Sheriff Macphail considers that I have been fully informed regarding the procedural courses open to me, and in the circumstances he sees no purpose in continuing this correspondence.   Regard it closed all you will but both you and Sheriff Macphail have illustrated you are willingly acquiescing with all the foregoing corruption, so until you address the points I raised ... I certainly do not regard it closed."

10.01.97   -  Lord Johnston, the Lord Ordinary LINK, on the "unopposed" motion of the pursuer, allowed the Closed Record in the civil case to be received late, "without consent" or knowledge of either the first or second defender, and appointed the Cause to the Procedure Roll on the pursuer's fifth Plea-in-Law. LINK

(2)  -  So what in fact happened here was that Lord Johnston acquiesced with agents for the pursuer by allowing the Closed Record to be received late, without the consent or knowledge of both defenders, contrary to what was entered in the interlocutor.

(3)  -  The result of my successful appeal in the High Court of Justiciary must have had a stultifying effect on the legal syndicalists in the covin, shaking it to its very foundations.    The only way they could envisage an out from this nightmare they now faced was to prevent me from defending my case in the Court of Session in any way, shape or form, and from delivering the coup de gráce LINK, that being my successful appeal before the  three law lords, including the second highest judge in the country, the Lord Justice-Clerk Lord Ross.

(4)  -  I assume agents for the pursuer claimed that the second defender had consented to the Procedure Roll, but that would be a contemptible lie.   The interlocutor actually stated: "Lord Johnston, the Lord Ordinary, on the unopposed motion of the Pursuer, and on Cause shown, allows the closed Record to be received late and marked No.25 of Process.   By consent of the second named defender appoints the Cause to the Procedure Roll on the Pursuer's fifth Plea-in-Law.  (Incidentally, let it be known that Lord Johnston is a member of the exclusive, masonic LINK and highly suspect Speculative Society of Edinbugh (SPEC) LINK, and by being so is not to be trusted in any society, including masonic circles.)

(5)   -  However, as mention above, this was a contemptible lie because there was NO consent by the second defender.  My wife knew nothing about the Procedure Roll.   Lord Johnston did not check the authenticity of this claim.  Had my wife known she would never have agreed to it because it was simply a ruse to covertly prevent my infallible defence from being heard in public chambers, exposing all the foregoing corruption.  Besides, why on earth would my wife agree to a stratagem by the pursuer to have her and her family evicted from her family home?   Is there no depths to the wicked ways or the extent of victimisation to which these characters will stoop?

(6)  -  If it was the case that agents for my wife had gone behind her back and consented to the Procedure Roll, then later denied any knowledge of it, this would prove beyond any doubt they were not acting in her best interests, but were in fact collaborating with the opposition, contrary to their client's best interests.

(7)  -  Despite the facts mentioned above, Lord Johnston acquiesced in the underhanded plot and fixed 7 May 1997 for the Procedure Roll hearing, permitting the additional, sneaky but crucial Plea-in-Law to be considered. LINK

07.02.97   -  I wrote to J G Stirling, Assistant Correspondence Officer in the Office of the Accountant in Bankruptcy, in response to his letter of 22 November 1996 LINK and reminded him that he had still not provided me with the name of the unwitting sheriff I asked for in my letter of 14 November 1996 LINK. This was the sheriff who was involved [under Section 63 of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985] in seeing to it that outlays and remuneration were fixed in favour of Graham Ritchie.

(2)  -  I mentioned Sheriff Poole's ruling in the Sheriff Court on 12 April 1995 that "any" question of expenses would be decided upon when the case is heard in the Court of Session LINK, and that Graham Ritchie had illegally defied that ruling by submitting his account of intromission.   I did not mention the 2-week time-bar rule under Section 53(1) of the 1985 Act LINK; which is understandable since the requirement placed on the Accountant in Bankruptcy was supposedly under Section 63, not Section 53.

(3)  -  I mentioned that Graham Ritchie's outlays were self-imposed.   I also mentioned the intrinsically involved matters, illustrated hereinbefore on 10 September 1995 LINK, 10 October 1995 LINK, and 7 October 1996 LINK.

08.02.97  -  I wrote to the Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah Armstrong, reminding her that I still awaited a reply to my letter of 11 December 1996, and gave her more details about Graham Ritchie's skulduggery in submitting a self-inflicted or false account of intromission. LINK

(2)  -  I asked again for a refund of the £42.00 fee I was charged for lodging my appeal in the Sheriff Court, but which was not to be heard in that court as it was remitted to the Court of Session on a motion by agents for the pursuer. LINK

11.02.97  -  The Sheriff Clerk Depute Sarah Armstrong wrote again stating that Sheriff Macphail had instructed her to inform me that it would be incompetent for a sheriff to order repayment of the fee to which I referred.   She gave me no information on whom I should approach for the reimbursement of of my £42.00.   She also informed me that Sheriff Macphail considered that there would be no purpose in any further correspondence on any of the matters mentioned in my letter of 8 February 1997.

06.03.97  -  I enrolled a motion in the Court of Session to discharge the Procedure Roll hearing that Lord Johnston fixed for 7 May 1997. LINK

17.03.97   -  Graham Ritchie, the would-be trustee, sent me a letter informing me that in accordance with Section 53(1) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, his account of intromission had once again been audited by the Accountant in Bankruptcy, who at the same time issued his determination, fixing the amount of outlays and remuneration payable to Graham Ritchie for his work as permanent trustee at £1,113.50, covering the period from 24 May 1996 to 23 November 1996, despite all the reasons provided why he should not have had fixed any further outlays and remuneration, as described at 7 October 1996. LINK

(2)  -  Not to forget what was mentioned at 22 November 96, paragraph (3) about Section (53(1) of the 1985 Act LINK, which states: "Within 2 weeks after the end of an accounting period, the permanent trustee shall in respect of that period submit ... to the Accountant in Bankruptcy (a) his accounts of his intromission ... and (b) a claim for the outlays reasonably incurred by him and for his remuneration."

(3)  -  Apart from Graham Ritchie's outlays and remuneration of £1,113.50 being by no stretch of the imagination reasonably incurred (for the reasons previously mentioned at 22 November 1996 LINK), he did not inform me of his accounting period, which is claimed to cover the period from 24 May 1996 to 23 November 1996, until I received a letter of this date (i.e., 17 March 1997).   But his account of intromission was submitted to the Accountant in Bankruptcy almost four months outwith the 2-week time-bar period stipulated by Section 53(1) of the 1985 Act. LINK

18.03.97  -  I appeared in the Court of Session at 10.00am for my motion to discharge the Procedure Roll hearing.  I was kept there until 3.40pm before being told by the Clerk of Session, Mr Cullen, that my motion would not be heard, but would be heard at a mutually arranged date - which was fixed for 11 April 1997.

(2)  -  I asked Mr Cullen the purpose of having a Procedure Roll hearing.   My suspicions were proved precise; that it was simply a ploy to win the case without a hearing proper in the Court of Session.

21.03.97  -  I wrote to the Sheriff Clerk's Office, reiterating some of the well known, and by now boring, truths about the invalid bankruptcy and about Graham Ritchie's latest railroaded account of intromission, which was fixed by the Accountant in Bankruptcy.   I asked that my letter be accepted as an appeal under Section 53(6) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, if that section could competently deal with it.   I intimated that I call as my evidence my entire submissions in my Defence in the Court of Session.

27.03.97   -  I phoned the Supreme Courts asking if I could change the date appointed for the hearing of my motion to discharge the Procedure Roll.  I was advised by the Assistant Clerk of Session, Mr Marshall to intimate my intention to the other parties and re-enrol my motion.

01.04.97  -  The Assistant Clerk of Session phoned at 9.55am, advising me that my motion to discharge the Procedure Roll will now be held on 3 April 1997.

03.04.97   -  I appeared in Court 4 of the Supreme Courts before Lord Eassie to define why the Procedure Roll should be discharged.  I explained how the Procedure Roll had been put on the agenda through skulduggery, that on 10 January 1997, Lord Johnston, the Lord Ordinary, on the unopposed motion of the pursuer allowed the Closed Record to be received late, then appointed the Cause to the Procedure Roll on the pursuer's fifth Plea-in-Law, without consent of either the first or second defender, contrary to what was entered in the interlocutor of the Closed Record.

(2)  -  As mentioned at 10 January 1997, agents for the pursuer had claimed that the second defender, my wife, had agreed to the Procedure Roll, but it was a contemptible lie because it was my wife who informed her agents that a Procedure Roll was put on the agenda, after I informed my wife, which was obviously after the date was already fixed. LINK  My wife's agents said they had no knowledge of the Procedure Roll.

(3)  -  For that reason alone, the Procedure Roll should have been cancelled by Lord Eassie.   I explained my fears to Lord Eassie that the only reason the pursuer was trying to prevent my Defence from being remitted to probation was to stymie my infallible case in furtive chambers away from the public eye, and to cover up all the preceding corruption.   I had that unfortunate tendency to tell the truth in these civil proceedings where it is rarely appreciated.   Even when Lord Eassie assured me that the Procedure Roll would not be heard in furtive chambers away from the public eye, I still maintained my desire to have it discharged.

(4)  -  Nevertheless, Lord Eassie refused to discharge the Procedure Roll.   By doing so, he had willingly affiliated himself with the crime protection syndicate.

08.04.97   -  The Sheriff Clerk Depute Mrs M McCabe, wrote to me stating that she could not accept my letter as a Note of Appeal (against the Accountant in Bankruptcy's improper decision to fix accounts of intromission in favour of Graham Ritchie) and that if I wished to proceed with my appeal I would have to lodge a Summary Application in the proper form with the court fees of £45.00.  It had obviously increased by £3.00 since 31 December 1994 when I lodged my appeal against Graham Ritchie trying to force the sale of my family home in pursuit of the pretended debt. LINK

09.04.97  -  Lord Hamilton, the Lord Ordinary LINK, on the unopposed motion of the pursuer, allowed the Minute of Amendment to be received marked No.27 of Process, and allowed the Closed Record to be opened up and amended.  He closed the Record and found the pursuer liable in the expenses occasioned by the amendment, and remitted an account thereof when lodged to the Auditor of the Court for taxation.

09.04.97  -  Lord Hamilton, the Lord Ordinary, decerned against the pursuer for payment to the defenders for the expenses found due in the preceding interlocutor as the same shall be taxed by the Auditor of the Court.

(2)  -  This was a patronising crumb from the mouth bearing the smile of the assassin in a cynical gesture of impartiality.  I regarded it as a trap to lure me into acknowledging a semblance of legitimacy of the process in an attempt to institutionalise all the foregoing larger injustices, so I simply ignored it.

16.04.97   -  Pursuant to the Sheriff Clerk Depute Mrs M McCabe's instructions of 8 April 1997, I lodged my Summary Application against the Accountant in Bankruptcy fixing Graham Ritchie's account of intromission.   I asked that the £42.00 that the Sheriff Court owed me be transferred to this latest application.

17.04.97  -  Some obscure Sheriff Clerk Depute (that is to say, I could not make out his signature - and his name did not appear on the letter) returned the Summary Application, claiming that he/she was unable to accept it "without the payment of the appropriate fee of £45.00, paid in full at the date of lodging.

20.04.97  -  I returned my appeal, advising once again that he/she transfer the £42.00 that the Sheriff Court owed me to cover the cost of lodging the current appeal.

23.04.97  -  The same obscure Sheriff Clerk Depute again returned my Summary Application, stating, again, that it could not be accepted without the fee of £45.00.

26.04.97   -  I returned my Summary Application, reluctantly enclosing a £3.00 postal order and asked the Sheriff Clerk Depute Mrs M McCabe to put it towards the £42.00 the Sheriff Court owed me, thereby making it up to the £45.00 required.

02.05.97  -  The obscure Sheriff Clerk Depute returned my Summary Application and my £3.00 postal order, stating that it cannot be accepted without the £45.00 paid in full.   I could see no other reason for these tactics other than that certain figures in the court were trying to swindle me out of the £42.00 without any explanation.

03.05.97   -  For the umpteenth time, I explained in fine detail how the Sheriff Court was due me £42.00 and I returned the Summary Application along with the £3.00 postal order.

07.05.97   -  The Procedure Roll was heard in Court 13 before Temporary Lord Ordinary Mr T Gordon Coutts, in respect of the pursuer's fifth sneaky, additional Plea-in-Law, which was added after the Record was closed, claiming that the averments in my Defence should not be remitted to probation (i.e., heard in court) as they were supposedly "irrelevant et separatim lacking in specification". LINK

(2)  -  I told him I had appeared in Court 4 of the Supreme Courts before Lord Eassie on 3 April 1997 to illustrate why the Procedure Roll should be discharged.  I explained how it had been put on the agenda through skulduggery, that on 10 January 1997, Lord Johnston the Lord Ordinary, on the unopposed motion of the pursuer allowed the Closed Record to be received late, then appointed the Cause to the Procedure Roll on the pursuer's fifth Plea-in-Law, without consent of either the first or second defender, contrary to what was entered in the interlocutor of the Closed Record.

(3)  -  I also mentioned that contrary to Lord Eassie's assurances that the Procedure Roll would not be heard in furtive chambers away from the public eye, the hearing was being heard in that fashion, without one member of the public or the media present.   I was therefore being forced to comply with this empty display of legal pageantry.

(4)  -  Gordon Coutts said he had read the terms of my Defence prior to the hearing, which in the "Answers to Condescendence" alone contained over 14.000 words.   He also questioned me for approximately an hour concerning the in-depth content therein contained.

(5)  -  I re-emphasised many of the points I had submitted in my Defence, including the issues surrounding the corruption of the sheriffs mentioned hereinbefore LINK, and how the bankruptcy scenario was an invalid, unlawfully stage-managed process.  At one point he said I raised many interesting and valid points but am not helping my case by accusing people in the legal profession of corruption and that I should moderate its terms. I told him I was not prepared to alter one word of my submissions and stuck by them in full.

(6)  -  At the end of the hearing Mr T G Coutts QC decided to make avizandum (delay his judgement until a later date). LINK

13.05.97  -  In the other issue, the Sheriff Clerk Depute D Baird sent my correspondence and my £3.00 postal order to the Process Department in the Court of Session, stating: "It would appear that the case to which he [William Burns] refers has been appealed to the Court of Session and remitted to your office."

(2)  -  There seemed to be utter confusion over who should be dealing with my appeal, which was against the decision of the Accountant in Bankruptcy to fix outlays and remuneration in favour of Graham Ritchie, or even over what I was actually appealing, despite the fact that I had consistently informed the Sheriff Clerk's office exactly what I was appealing about.  I had already lodged an appeal in the proper form.

(3)  -  I had also consistently informed that office how the £42.00 debt transpired, that I had paid that amount to lodge an appeal there on 31 December 1994 LINK, but my appeal was not to be heard in that court as it was remitted to the Court of Session on 12 April 1995 on a motion by Eric William Robertson, advocate for the pursuer, Graham Ritchie. LINK

16.05.97  -  The Assistant Clerk of Session, A C Marshall, returned the £3.00 postal order to the Sheriff Clerk Depute D Baird, stating: "The above case [Ritchie -v- Burns] was remitted to the Court of Session but it would seem that the £3.00 is in respect of a fee that Edinburgh Sheriff Court are pursuing."

(2)  -  Perhaps the Assistant Clerk of Session and the Sheriff Clerk Depute had realised the implication of Actor debet sequi forum rei:- that "a pursuer must follow the forum or court of the defender; that is, a pursuer raising an action against his debtor or obligant, must do so before the forum or court to the jurisdiction of which the defender is subject at the time."   But no one, it seemed, wanted to take responsibility for the case.

(3)  -  But if the Assistant Clerk of Session and the Sheriff Clerk Depute were not aware of "Actor debet sequi forum rei", neither of them seemed capable of grasping that even though my appeal to the Sheriff Court against the Accountant in Bankruptcy's decision to fix Graham Ritchie's account of intromission was intrinsically linked to the principal case in the Court of Session, the more recent appeal was a separate case, but with the same merits, along with additional ones.  Be that as it may, the case in the subordinate Sheriff Court would ultimately fall on the decision of the higher Court of Session, which ought to have already been confined to obscurity with the earlier result of my successful appeal to the High Court of Justiciary.

20.05.97  -  Despite the fact that the Sheriff Clerk Depute D Baird sent my correspondence and £3.00 postal order to the Court of Session on 13 April 1997, he wrote to me stating: "We have still not received the full £45.00.  The fact that £42.00 was paid for Defences does not cover the fee for this application.  Please forward £45.00 for full payment otherwise we cannot accept this application."  It seemed to me that the Sheriff Clerk Depute was having a shot in the dark and was depending on guesswork.

21.05.97   -  Mr T G Coutts QC, the Temporary Lord Ordinary, having resumed consideration of the Cause, sustained the pursuer's fifth Plea-in-Law and refused to remit to probation my entire Defence.  He reserved in the meantime the question of expenses.  If my case, which, for the main part, is identical in both the civil case and the criminal "equivalent", surely cannot honestly be deemed irrelevant by Mr T G Coutts when it has already been deemed relevant by three Law Lords, including the then Lord Justice-Clerk Lord Ross, when they upheld my appeal in the High Court of Justiciary on 6 December 1996. LINK

(2)  -  T G Coutts QC produced a five-page document containing his "Opinion", suppressing almost my entire averments.  His verdict was reached haphazardly, for the wrong reasons, in spite of the evidence. I never thought I would witness so much wilful and convenient forgetfulness.  Gordon Coutts was unjust because he only considered one side of the case; that of the pursuer.  The truth was the main casualty.  He ignored the facts and interpreted the law with preparatory measures in line with his political subservience, further institutionalising an injustice.  In the name of law he chose to destroy the law.  In the name of justice he created injustice.  Judges and courts are alike open to criticism if reasonable argument is offered against any judicial act that is contrary to law or the public good.  This was wilful injustice of the highest order.

(3)  -  At page 4 of his Opinion, Mr Coutts seemed to think that the pretended debt arose from poll tax arrears.  He conveniently disregarded the rendition of facts in my Defence and my oral averments to him in court when I explained that the pretended debt arose from the excessive expenses incurred by the poll tax officer Ian M Rogers through him hiring the services of the advocate - and newly appointed judge - Robert Reed, to explain the decision he made in his office on 18 December 1989 when he refused my appeal against my name being entered in his register for liability to pay the invalid poll tax. LINK  Not one penny of the pretended debt resulted from arrears of the poll tax as the money for so-called arrears was docked at source from my income support benefit.

(4)  -  On a separate issue, Mr Coutts chose to ignore the fact that the Procedure Roll itself had been put on the agenda underhandedly, without the consent of either of the defenders, and had been done so to stymie my defence in furtive chambers away from the public eye.  Mr Coutts ought to have cancelled the Procedure Roll right there and then when it was explained to him in court that there was no consent to it.  But neither Mr Coutts nor Lord Eassie cancelled it, even though they were both made aware that the Procedure Roll was put on the agenda by Lord Johnston when, on the unopposed (?) motion of the pursuer, he allowed the Closed Record to be received late, then appointed the Cause to the Procedure Roll on the pursuer's fifth Plea-in-Law, without consent of either the first or second defender, contrary to the lie entered in the interlocutor of the Closed Record.  And this fifth Plea-in-Law was the belated one appended as an afterthought to ensure my defence was deemed irrelevant, preventing my infallible case from being heard in court.

(5)  -  Mr Coutts also chose not to take into account the appeal I won in the High Court of Justiciary on 6 December 1996 against a decision by Sheriff Richard John Dinwoodie Scott LINK who found me guilty on 15 November 1995 in a "Trial-by-Ambush" of "failing without reasonable excuse to deliver to the interim trustee a list of assets and liabilities".  The former Lord Justice-Clerk Ross, and Lord Morison and Lord Cowie overturned the guilty verdict, saying Sheriff Scott was wrong for not allowing me the opportunity to challenge the validity of the sequestration at my trial. LINK

(6)  -  In this written Opinion", Gordon Coutts seemed to be under the misapprehension that I was citing other cases for justification to challenge the validity of the poll tax.  This was nonsense.  I called specifically on Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union, not, as he tried to suggest, to challenge the validity of the poll tax in Scotland, but to unequivocally confirm the invalidity of the poll tax in Scotland.

(7)  -  Similarly, and contrary to what Mr Coutts averred on page 4 of his Opinion, I am not "seeking to challenge in the same position as the appeals of Murray -v- Rogers and of Fraser -v- McCorkindale, 1992 S.L.T. 221 and 229", as made manifest in my Defence in the Closed Record.  Besides, as also mentioned in my Defence in the Closed Record, it was the selfsame politically corrupt sheriff, Peter G B McNeill who was responsible for much of the stage management of my pretended bankruptcy and for much of the subsequent corruption that followed.  And it was Sheriff McNeill who presided over the Murray -v- Rogers case.  In fact, it was actually the selfsame cosy little setup of Sheriff McNeill, the poll tax officer, Ian Rogers, and the then advocate, Robert Reed, who were chosen to collude to underpin the invalid poll tax.  Robert Reed was the extravagant mouthpiece hired by the former poll tax officer, and together they were involved in the conspiracy to defeat both me in my appeal and also Randolph Murray in his.  Sheriff McNeill was the third member of this clamlike triumvirate, picked to join in the chorus and say amen to his teammates' submissions.

(8) - At the final paragraph on page 4 of his Opinion, Gordon Coutts states: "In relation to the defenders contentions about the validity of the Treaty of Union in if it could ever be competently raised in the 'present process' [my emphasis] ... "
But the fact of the matter is that the Treaty of Union 1707 cannot competently be left out of the present process because it has been an intrinsic part of my case from the very beginning, away back in Ian Rogers’ former council office at 30-31 Queen Street, Edinburgh, on Monday, 18 December 1989 LINK, and in every other tribunal following thereon, right through to the present day.   Gordon Coutts cannot just simply wish away that fact.

(9)  -  He further states at the top of page 5 of his Opinion: "The sheriff [in the Fraser -v- McCorkindale case], in my view, correctly rejected the purported constitutional argument as having in the first place no substance and in the second not being a justiciable issue determinable by the courts.  If it were necessary to do so I would have held that the defenders' defences had they relevantly challenged the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc (Scotland) Act 1987 were misconceived."

(10)  -  First, I do not think anyone is interested in what Gordon Coutts' view is on the decision by a sheriff in the Fraser -v- McCorkindale case and whether or not he thinks the sheriff in that case "correctly rejected the purported constitutional argument as having in the first place no substance  and in the second not being a justiciable issue determinable by the court".

(11)  -  Apart from anything else, that statement alone is antithetic.  How can a sheriff reject a constitutional argument as having no substance and in the same breath assert that it is not a justiciable issue determinable by the courts?  It is either a constitutional argument or it is not.  If it is a constitutional argument, which it most certainly is, it obviously does have substance, rendering the courts incompetent to make a justiciable determination.  What is more, it binds the courts not to ignore, undermine or subvert a not so much constitutional argument as a constitutional fact.  Only God Almighty can reject a constitutional fact.

(12)  -  On the other hand, if it is not a constitutional argument, it is a justiciable issue determinable by the courts.  Gordon Coutts, therefore, cannot eat his cake and have it.

(13)  -  Mr Coutts' Opinion, however, is typical of the cop-out tactics used by Sheriff Andrew Montgomery Bell in my earlier appeal to him in the Sheriff Court against my name being entered in Ian Rogers' register for liability to pay the invalid poll tax. LINK  After agreeing that neither he nor anyone else is competent to contest, overrule, or even ignore the terms laid down in the Treaty of Union 1707, he then proceeded to do exactly that after making avizandum.

(14)  -  Secondly, Mr Coutts stated: "If it were necessary to do so I would have held that the defenders' defences had they relevantly challenged the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc (Scotland) Act 1987 were misconceived."  This reveals that if he read my Defence at all, he paid either scant regard or no regard to my averments because I could not have specified in greater detail why the poll tax legislation was without equivocation invalid in Scotland.

(15)  -  To then say that the challenge to the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc (Scotland) Act 1987 was misconceived, illustrates that Gordon Coutts is one of three things: (a) stupid; (b) illiterate; or (c) politically and/or criminally corrupt; because it is indisputable that Article XVIII of the Treaty of Union invalidated the poll tax legislation in Scotland.  I believe that QCs are well educated and in some cases even intelligent, and I also believe that not many are stupid, and none are illiterate, so I must give Gordon Coutts the benefit of the doubt and put his failing down to political and/or criminal corruption.

(16)  -  It may well be that in his role as temporary judge, Mr Coutts is not competent to overrule an Act of Parliament and, as suggested at the top of page 5 of his Opinion, that the "constitutional argument ... [is not] a justiciable issue determinable by the courts", but as a private citizen Mr Coutts most certainly would be competent to overrule or ignore a parliamentary enactment that is inconsistent with or contrary to the Treaty of Union 1707.  This argument is dealt with at some length at 13 June 1990, from paragraphs 8 onwards, so there is no point in repeating it here. LINK

(17)  -  Mr Coutts seemed confused at the foot of page 4 and the top of page 5 of his Opinion that I was asking him to rule on whether or not the poll tax was valid in Scotland.  As indicated in my defence in the Closed Record, I do not need a ruling, an opinion, or a seal of approval from Mr Coutts - nor for that matter from the Lord President, the Lord Chancellor, the Prime Minister, or from any parliamentary dogma - about whether or not the poll tax was valid in Scotland, because it was glaringly invalid, and no court or Act of Parliament is competent to rule otherwise.  I explained this to Mr Coutts at the snidely arranged Procedure Roll.

24.05.97  -  In re the Summary Application to the Sheriff Court against the Accountant in Bankruptcy fixing Graham Ritchie's account of intromission, I wrote to Sheriff Clerk Depute Mrs M McCabe, stating: "Since you are obviously trying to be awkward and will not put the £42.00 that the Sheriff Court is due me in respect of the fee for a case which will not be heard in the Sheriff Court, as touched upon in my letter 3 May 1997 LINK, could you please reimburse me for that amount so that I may return it to you to be put towards the fee required to cover the cost of this latest appeal.   I have enclosed the £3.00 postal order and will send you the £42.00 by return of post, which will make up the £45.00 required by you."

27.05.97   -  In the principal case in the Court of Session, I posted an appeal against Gordon Coutts' decision to uphold the pursuer's fifth belatedly and sneakily submitted Plea-in-Law that my averments are "irrelevant et separatim lacking in specification", therefore they should not be remitted to probation. LINK

28.05.97   -  Back to the secondary case.  The Principal Sheriff Clerk Depute J M Murphy wrote informing me that Mrs M. McCabe was no longer working in that office.  My Summary Application was returned together with a "cheque" for the sum of £3.00.  I was told that because the earlier action was subsequently remitted to the Court of Session is of no relevance and that no refund was due.

(2)  -  What he was in effect saying was that I must pay the £42.00 to have my appeal heard in the Sheriff Court, or to even not have my appeal heard in the Sheriff Court.  It is called extortion by any other name.

(3)  -  I was advised that if I wished my application to be processed, I should return the same to the Sheriff Clerk's Office with the appropriate fee.

31.05.97  -  I returned the Summary Application along with the cheque for the sum of £3.00.  Incidentally, I did not have a bank account and did not have one since I was made unlawfully bankrupt.  I mentioned that the £42.00 was being kept from me under false pretences  and so once again asked that it be put to the valueless £3.00 cheque I returned with the letter.

05.06.97  -  The Principal Sheriff Clerk J M Murphy once again returned my application, together with the cheque for the sum of £3.00.  He repeated the misconception contained in his previous letter of 28 May 1997. LINK

(2)  -  To this day, a considerable amount of correspondence has travelled back and forth between myself and the Principal Sheriff Clerk Depute J M Murphy, and I was continually prevented from putting my appeal to the test in the Sheriff Court.  The court stopped returning the £3.00 cheque and the Summary Application, so it is still incumbent on that court to fix a date of hearing for my appeal.  The argument is ongoing.  This court is guilty of either obstructing the course of justice or of extortion, or both.

04.07.97  -  In the principal case, the Assistant Clerk of Session Ann Rutherford, wrote to me explaining how to enrol a motion for a late review of an appeal against the Temporary Lord Ordinary Mr T Gordon Coutts' interlocutor of 21 May 1997 and to "reclaim the prints", as it is called. LINK

18.07.97  -  I enrolled my motion for a late review of Mr Coutts' interlocutor so that I can appeal against it.

24.07.97   -  I appeared in Court 7 in the Supreme Courts before Lord Alan C M Johnston LINK for the hearing of my motion for a late review of Mr Coutts' interlocutor and to reclaim the prints.   Again it was held in furtive chambers away from the public and media eye.  Not unexpectedly, Lord Johnston was the selfsame Lord Ordinary, who, on 10 January 1997, allowed the Closed Record in this case to be received late, "without consent" of either the first or second defender, and appointed the Cause to the Procedure Roll on the pursuer's fifth Plea-in-Law, contrary to what was entered in the interlocutor.  He now had a vested interest in ensuring that another decision would be railroaded through the court on a fast track.  This was another stark impediment to natural justice and the public good.  For the reason explained at 10 January 1997, paragraph 5, my wife would never have consented to the Procedure Roll, and that is without taking into account that she knew nothing about it, in any event. LINK

(2)  -  I accused agents for the pursuer of being blatant liars over the Procedure Roll fiasco by claiming the second defender agreed to it.  I also accused them of being gravy-train-riders for prolonging the issue by taking it up to the highest courts only to then try to have it declared irrelevant, when they could have pursued that same course of action in the Sheriff Court. These legal vagabonds did not try to deny one word of it.

(3)  -  Lord Johnston had access to my Defence and other documents I had previously submitted to the Court of Session, so he must have been aware of the catalogue of injustices I had hitherto faced.

(4)  -  In any event, I explained to Lord Johnston that I was forced to move for a late review because I had difficulty raising the £95.00 required to lodge the appeal.  I explained it also took time to obtain the necessary information from the Clerk of Session about how to properly enrol a motion.

(5) - I covered much of my grievance, including;

(a) Sheriff Andrew Bell's breathtaking U-turn on 13 June 1990 LINK and his tantrum-throwing on 27 June 1990 LINK;
(b) the reasons Sheriff Peter McNeill was wrong on 21 December 1992 for making me bankrupt (i.e., the unsigned Oath by Creditor and his refusal to allow me to show cause why sequestration should not be awarded LINK, along with the preceding orchestrated processes in the council office and in sheriff courtrooms);
(c) the stage management of the bankruptcy issue and that decisions were impatiently railroaded through other various sheriff courtrooms thereafter;
(d) the pretended creditor no longer existed, his job becoming redundant on 5 April 1993; LINK
(e) the offer by a third party to pay the original pretended debt on 9 May 1995; LINK
(f) the discharge date of the illicit bankruptcy was railroaded through the Sheriff Court on 5 October 1995; LINK
(g) I am no longer obliged to provide the nonexistent so-called trustee with a list of my assets and liabilities since my appeal in the High Court of Justiciary was upheld on 6 December 1996 against my requirement to do so; LINK
(h) that I had appeared in Court 4 of the Supreme Courts before Lord Eassie on 3 April 1997 and elucidated why the Procedure Roll should be discharged LINK, explaining how it had been put on the agenda through skulduggery due to Lord Johnston himself, on 10 January 1997, on the "unopposed" motion (it was unopposed because both defenders new nothing about the motion) of the pursuer, allowing the Closed Record to be received late, then appointed the Cause to the Procedure Roll on the pursuer's fifth Plea-in-Law, without consent of either the first or second defender, contrary to what was entered in the interlocutor of the Closed Record, and that Lord Eassie disregarded these pivotal points and proceeded to refuse to discharge the Procedure Roll LINK;
(i) that contrary to Lord Eassie's assurances that day, the Procedure Roll was heard in furtive chambers in Court 13 before Temporary Lord Ordinary Mr T Gordon Coutts QC on 7 May 1997 without one member of the public or media present, forcing me to comply with an empty display of "legal" pageantry LINK; and
(j) the fact that the case in the Sheriff Court was remitted to the Court of Session at a time when my Defence was obviously not considered "irrelevant et separatim lacking in specification" LINK, only to be subsequently predestined as such by Mr Gordon Coutts QC, in spite of the fact he admitted in court, as contained at page 5 of his Opinion, that "some parts of my document could in fact provide a relevant defence".  I also mentioned to Lord Johnston that by remitting the case to the Court of Session, it enabled several more free-riding solicitors to join the gravy-train, making the expenses soar through the ceiling, while enabling the pretended trustee, Graham Ritchie to endlessly submit shameless accounts of intromission to be fixed by the Accountant in Bankruptcy.

(6)  -  That said, I unfortunately forgot to mention to Lord Johnston that the bankruptcy was railroaded through while I had an appeal lying in the Court of Session under Section 29(2) of the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc (Scotland) Act 1987 against the decision by Sheriff Andrew Bell when he refused my "intermediate" appeal on 28 May 1990 LINK, but this and other information was contained in my written submissions and in my Defence proper, copies of which Lord Johnston had in front of him.

(7)  -  In the stern cut and thrust atmosphere of the proceedings, I also forgot to mention that my defence in both the civil case and the criminal "equivalent" are almost identical, so this was another reason it could not possibly be deemed irrelevant by Temporary Lord Ordinary Coutts because it had already been deemed relevant by three Law Lords; the then Lord Justice-Clerk Lord Ross, Lord Cowie and Lord Morison when they upheld my appeal in the High Court of Justiciary on 6 December 1996. LINK

(8)  -  And I forgot to mention that the deferment of the discharge date was enrolled in the wrong court, not the one I was subject to at that time, so I should not have been compelled to answer before that court, the decree of that court being valueless, there being no way of enforcing it, pursuant to "Actor debet sequi forum rei". LINK

(9)  -  I did not forget to mention the preceding corrupt sheriffs and the equally corrupt Temporary Lord Ordinary Mr Coutts.   For some reason Lord Johnston felt he had to remind me, with a steely grimace: "I am a High Court Judge, Mr Burns!"  Unconcerned by this obvious remark, I resumed my discourse regardless: "Like I was saying, Temporary Lord Ordinary Coutts is corrupt!"  Lord Johnston's face went beetroot, totally ignored my entire submissions, written and oral, made a brute assertion in refusing my motion, and immediately began withdrawing from the courtroom in the direction of the door to his left behind the bench.  As he was departing, I responded to his decision in accustomed fashion and countercharged: "Further corruption!"  He did not respond immediately so I repeated the charge louder.  He made as if to turn, probably thought better of it since he would have to charge me with "contempt of court", giving me another day to illustrate the accuracy of the accusations.  He checked his stride then scurried away through the doorway.  But like Sheriff McNeill before him (21 December 1992), Lord Johnston did not deny the accusation. LINK

(10)  -  For the record, I was not in court to make friends or kowtow to the legal establishment, I was there, first and foremost, to proclaim the invalidity of the poll tax in Scotland, and, secondly, through my prolonged, overwhelming experience in seeking justice within the legal processes, I felt obliged to expose the corruption I had faced therein.  If the roles were reversed and my case was the one pursued by the plaintiff or the Crown, they would never have had to come out the stalls to win it.  However, the great panjandrums in the sphere of authority would never have imagined I would resist their coordinated turpitude for so long, so the only way to defeat me was to prevent me from putting my case to a Proof hearing.  That is why the pursuer's sneaky, illegally accepted fifth Plea-in-Law had to be entered into the Closed Record and prevent my case being heard in court. LINK

(11)  -  I was not so much a loose cannon as a peashooter blasting holes through the legal candy floss.

(12)  -  For me to merely say that I was made a victim of political and/or criminal corruption in the courts would be an understatement of cosmic dimensions.

30.07.97   -  Graham Ritchie, the pretended trustee, sent me a letter stating: "In accordance with s.53(1) of the Banruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, I have submitted my account of intromission to the Accountant in Bankruptcy together with a claim for my remuneration and outlays ... covering the period from 24 November 1996 to 23 May 1997. ... The Accountant fixes the trustee's remuneration for the aforementioned period at £686.00 (exclusive of VAT) and outlays at £550.81."

(2)  -  This latest attempt to extort was only about three weeks outwith the 2-week time limit stipulated by Section 53(1) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, but it was time-barred nevertheless.   Section 53(1) of the 1985 Act states: "Within 2 weeks after the end of an accounting period, the permanent trustee shall in respect of that period submit ... to the Accountant in Bankruptcy (a) his accounts of intromission ... and (b) a claim for the outlays reasonably incurred by him and for his remuneration."   Graham Ritchie's outlays and remuneration of £1236.81 (exclusive of VAT) were by no stretch of the imagination reasonably incurred, for the reasons mentioned at 7 October 1996 LINK, 14 November 1996, paragraph 2 LINK, and 17 March 1997 LINK.

27.11.97   -  The two years deferment of the discharge date expired today with no application, to my knowledge, for a further deferment - five years after it was first illegally imposed.  I am, therefore, henceforth "officially not a bankrupt.   That is even forgetting for the purpose that I was unlawfully made bankrupt in the first place.

21.04.98   -  Graham Ritchie sent me a letter stating: "The Accountant in Bankruptcy has examined and audited the Account of intromission of Graham Ritchie Esq., C.A., Permanent Trustee covering the period 26 May to 23 November 1995 [and] the account closes with a balance of £Nil due to the Trustee. The Accountant fixes the Trustee's remuneration at £1,500 plus VAT of £262.50 and outlays at £Nil.

21.04.98 - The same day Graham Ritchie sent me a letter stating: “The Accountant in Bankruptcy has examined and audited the Account of intromission of Graham Ritchie Esq., C.A., as permanent Trustee covering the period 26 May 1995 to 23 November 1995 [and] the account closes with a balance of £Nil due to the Trustee.   The Accountant fixes the Trustee’s remuneration at £540.00 plus VAT of £94.50and outlays at £Nil.”

(2)  -  However, although Graham Ritchie's earlier submitted accounts of intromission were time-barred by, respectively, 16 months, almost 4 months, and about 3 weeks, this latest attempt to extort was almost, respectively, 2½ years and 2 years outwith the 2-week time limit stipulated by Section 53(1) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985. LINK   His remuneration of, respectively, £1,500 plus VAT of £262.50, and £540.00 plus VAT of £94.50, was by no stretch of the imagination reasonably incurred, for the reasons mentioned at 7 October 1996 LINK, 14 November 1996 paragraph 2 LINK, and 17 March 1997 LINK.

20.07.98  -  Yet again, Graham Ritchie persisted in sending me letters of demand, stating: "The Accountant in Bankruptcy has examined and audited the Account of intromission of Graham Ritchie Esq., C.A., as Permanent Trustee covering the period 24 November 1997 to 23 May 1998.  The account closes with a balance of £11,349.62 due to the trustee.  The Accountant fixes the trustee's remuneration for the aforementioned period at £887.50 (exclusive of VAT) and outlays at £10,031.26.
“I would advise you that should you wish to appeal against the Accountant’s determination, you have fourteen days within which you may appeal to the sheriff in accordance with s.53(1) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985.”
This letter was sent 2 weeks outwith the time-bar limit.

(2)  -  Since I won my appeal in the High Court of Justiciary on 6 December 1996 LINK against the conviction of failing without reasonable excuse to deliver to the interim trustee a list of my assets and liabilities when it was held by the Lord Justice-Clerk Lord Ross, Lord Morison and Lord Cowie that I should have been allowed to challenge the validity of the sequestration at my trial in the Sheriff Court on 15 November 1995 LINK, thereby releasing me from that requirement, it must be asked why Graham Ritchie was still trying to swindle outlays and remuneration for sending one circular to one, single, solitary, pretended, nonexistent creditor - nonexistent for the previous 3¼ years LINK.

(3)  -  All but four days of this so-called accounting period was after the date expired of the deferment for two years of the discharge date of the bankruptcy.  Graham Ritchie must have known he was not engaged in a legitimate enterprise, so I am sure that anyone reading this will understand the implication of this with Graham Ritchie's persistent, ongoing attempts to extort.

(4)  -  Hopefully, one will also realise that NONE of the aforementioned Accounts of intromission would have materialised had agents for Graham Ritchie not moved the Sheriff Court on 12 April 1995 to remit the Cause to the Court of Session LINK (not forgetting they already conspired to have my entire Defence deemed irrelevant with their sneaky additional Plea-in-Law accepted late by Sheriff Peter McNeill on 15 March 1995 LINK to continue for that hearing on 12 April).  Also not forgetting that the motion to remit the Cause to the Court of Session was more than two years after the would-be creditor ceased to exist LINK.  One must also remember that NONE of the aforementioned Accounts of intromission would have arisen had agents for Graham Ritchie accepted the offer made by a third party on 9 May 1995 to pay the pretended debt. LINK

28.07.98  -  I wrote a letter of appeal to the Sheriff Clerk Depute against the Accountant in Bankruptcy's determination about the foregoing account of intromission of Graham Ritchie, stating, inter alia:
"I would like to lodge an appeal under Section 53(6) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 against the Accountant in Bankruptcy's decision to audit the account of intromission of Graham Ritchie covering, particularly, the period 24 November 1997 to 23 May 1998, closing with a balance of £11,348.62.
“Your office owes me £45.00 in respect of a £3.00 postal order LINK I sent you for payment in respect of the fee for lodging an earlier appeal that I sent to the Sheriff Court on Saturday, 31 December 1994, which at that time cost £42.00 LINK.  I am unemployed but you can use that total of £45.00 in payment for this latest appeal.  The earlier appeal was not heard in the Sheriff Court as it was remitted to the Court of Session.” LINK

(2)  -  This appeal was sent well within the fourteen days’ time-barred period.

31.07.98  -  The appeal was officially stamped : "Sheriff Court, Lodged, 31 July 1998, Edinburgh, still well within the fourteen days' time-bar period.

10.08.98  -  I received this appeal back from the Sheriff Court - although it was stamped as ledged dated 31 July 1998 - along with an accompanying note, which stated simply: "Fee due with appeal £28.00.  Please forward so we can place your appeal before the Sheriff.  With compliments of the Sheriff Clerk."

10.08.98  -  I returned the appeal together with a postal order to the value of £28.00.

03.09.98  -  The appeal was again returned to me by Sheriff Clerk Depute John Innes.  This time the excuse was:
"I regrettably return the papers in the above Appeal for the undernoted reasons.

  1. The Appeal received on 31 July 1998 is late.
  2. The Appeal is not in the proper form - i.e., comply to form A1 of the Ordinary Cause Rules.

"I apologise for the delay in processing this matter, regrettably due to misplaced papers here within the Sheriff Clerk’s Office.
"I however hope that this is of some assistance to you.”

(I would learn within a couple of years from my colleagues in the campaign group, “Scotland Against Crooked Lawyers (SACL)”, that it was not uncommon for litigants’ papers to be conveniently misplaced by sheriff clerks or clerks of session, never to be seen again by the concerned party in a lawsuit.  Among the list of approximately 150 crooked lawyers named and shamed by SACL on their website and on their fliers, several sheriff clerks were included, as well as, obviously, many solicitors, advocates, QCs, law firms, sheriffs and judges.

(2)  -  Nevertheless, in the first instance mentioned above, it is a complete and utter fabrication to claim the appeal was received late as the appeal received on the 31 July 1998 was well within the two-week time-bar period, as mentioned above at 28th LINK and 31st July 1998 LINK.

(3)  -  In the second instance, if the appeal was not in the proper form, why was it accepted and stamped in the first place, awaiting just the arrival of the £28.00 fee?  The Sheriff Clerk Depute had obviously studied previous form and expected me to take the same stance I consistently took against the Accountant in Bankruptcy’s decisions to audit Graham Ritchie’s accounts of intromission and refuse to pay the court fee.   It would not be expected that I would overlook the fact that the Sheriff Court still owed me £45.00.

(4)  -  This illustrates beyond any shadow of a doubt that I have been constantly stymied, at any cost, with any derisory excuse, from lodging my appeal against the Accountant in Bankruptcy's determinations, because, hitherto the only excuse forthcoming for not accepting my appeal was the question of the court fee, but now that I had succumbed to their request and paid the £28.00 fee, another excuse had to be invented to preclude me from submitting my infallible case and prevent Graham Ritchie from keeping the gravy-train rolling.  Yet, the other side of the coin reveals that all of Graham Ritchie's accounts of intromission were received late, therefore, time-barred, but were audited by the Accountant in Bankruptcy regardless.   I was being told my appeal exposing the accounts were received late and cannot be heard - even though it was not received late.  The mind boggles.  It gives the monied might the means of wearying out the right!

(5)  -  Some may say I could have extricated myself from the situation in the earliest stages thereby preventing the escalation of expenses, but others, like me, have to react positively when confronted by the corrupt processes of the legal profession.     One has to live with one's own conscience, what ever it might be worth, and nothing else can deflect from that perspective.   If your conscience is your guiding light, you must follow it untill the bitter end.  There are some who might lose their health and wealth, with others ending up in a lunatic asylum trying to make sense of the unimaginable functioning of the legal profession and their syndicalist alliances.   These characters exhaust plaintiffs' finances, patience, courage and hope; overthrowing their brains and breaking their hearts.

26/27.11.98  -  The so-called "Diet of 'Proof'" began, presided over by Lord Philip in Court 14 of the Court of Session.  The First Defender, myself, was demoted to the public gallery with no part to play in the pantomime.

(2)  -  Lord Philip asked Gail Joughin why it had taken so long to reach the "Proof" stage of the case.  She told him that it was due to the attitude of the First Defender over many years.  I immediately rose to my feet from the public gallery and vigorously stressed: "The First Defender's attitude was exemplary." LINK   Lord Philip said that if there are any more outbursts from the public gallery, the person would be removed from the court.

(3)  -  Maureen Leslie, Graham Ritchie’s assistant with Ernst & Young, evidenced that a debt of £750 arose from non payment of the poll tax.  Where on earth did she conjure that one up?  I was not one penny behind with the poll tax.   The unemployment benefits office made sure of that.  Since I refused to pay the illegal poll tax at the outset, the money was deducted at source from my benefit.  This was unconnected to the so-called “principal sum” claimed by the poll tax officer for his legal expenses: the sum that sparked off the stage-managed bankruptcy in the first place?  This was the first time this nonexistent £750 fallacious figure was thrown into the arena.

(4)  -  Eric William Robertson, advocate for the pursuer, led Maureen Leslie by the nose and got her to mention the occasions on which she and the Accountant in Bankruptcy decided that I had committed an offence under the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985 for not complying with the pretended trustee’s demands to provide a list of assets and liabilities without reasonable excuse, only to then sinisterly drop the subject without taking it to its inseparable conclusion LINK.  The implication that would be inferred from that is that I was in fact guilty of not complying with the pretended trustee’s demands to provide a list of assets and liabilities without reasonable excuse.  The fact of the matter is that I was convicted and fined £100.00 in a railroaded “Trial-by-Ambush” in the criminal court by Sheriff Richard John Dinwoodie Scott on 15 November 1995 for not complying with all the foregoing lawlessness LINK, but after brief deliberations in the High Court of Appeal on 6 December 1996, before the former Lord Justice-Clerk Ross and Lords Morison and Cowie, I was disburdened of the guilty verdict LINK.  After their deliberations, Lord Ross told me: “The Sheriff (Richard John Dinwoodie Scott) was wrong for not allowing me the opportunity at my trial to challenge the validity of the sequestration, therefore the conviction is quashed and the appeal upheld.”
However, after the second day of suffering all the legalese/spiel from the legal posturists, the case was adjourned until Wednesday, 23 June 1999, seven months on LINK.  They were having difficulty navigating the proceedings with me witnessing the sham and eagerly and overtly taking down notes.  A method would be contrived to repress me LINK.

(5)  -  This same day I sent Lord Philip a copy of the chronology of the entire history of the case to date.  It also contained my appeal to the House of Lords.  I sent it to Lord Philip precisely to give him the opportunity to acquaint himself with the facts surrounding the case and expose the low-life maggots in our legal system’s Crime Protection Syndicate.  All these facts were swept under the carpet as the legal pantomime tinkered around the periphery of the case, waffling about circumstances that existed only in the backwaters of their polluted imagination, not remotely connected with the case.

(6)  -  In that letter I informed Lord Philip that I had never in my life witnessed such “legal” posturing with both advocates, Eric William Robertson and Gail Joughin, dabbling with exhaustively disconnected, aimless, evasive and repetitive inanity, particularly Robertson for the pursuer.  They had a bigger dilemma avoiding the essence of the case for hours on end than they would had they actually debated it.  The facts, as laid out in the terms of my chronology, a copy with which Lord Philip was provided, are so straightforward it would be extremely difficult to deny I had an infallible case.  What took place was not a legitimate “Proof” hearing, but a lynching.  Every legal deviant I had encountered hitherto would have no difficulty being cast as villains in a Disney cartoon.  Perhaps our civil courts are a reflection of Disneyland.

23.06.99 - The hearing was put back again until 14 January 2000.  Everybody, it seemed wanted to distance themselves from this travesty of justice

30.09.99 - The semi-skilled gangster, Graham Ritchie is sacked by the Ernst & Young Gang. LINK

14.01.00  -  I attended court for what was ostensibly the "Proof" hearing of Graham Ritchie against the First and Second Defenders.   In reality it was Graham Ritchie's legal agents, the Second Defender's (my wife's) legal agents and Lord Philip, all united against my wife.  Yet she could add little or nothing to assist the proceedings, with me, the First Defender, a mere gagged spectator.

(2)  -  What started out, in my case, as an exposé of the invalidity of the Community Charge/Poll Tax in Scotland, led to the uncovering of the infinitely more serious, deep-rooted corruption in the extended legal system in Scotland.

(3)  -  Nevertheless, The moment I entered Court 4 in the Court of Session on Friday, 14 January 2000, the so-called “defence” advocate, Gail Joughin, gave Lord Philip a barely discernible nod.  I realised immediately that the nod was prearranged to identify me.  Discreetly summoning the mace-bearer to the bench, he quietly instructed him to remove me from the court.   While waiting outside the courtroom during the proceedings, two police officers appeared to warn me of the consequences of returning to the courtroom. The police have no part to play in civil proceedings/pantomimes, yet here they were to ensure a civil court hearing would press ahead without the main party witnessing the shenanigan.  This gave Lord Philip carte blanche to navigate the proceedings in any way he chose without the presence in the empty courtroom of one member of the public with an objective mind to make a fair appraisal of the proceedings.  By ordering my removal, he also ignored the fact that a bankrupt, sequestrated, though not retrocessed, maintains a radical right and interest in his own estate.  And that is not taking into account the fact that the sequestration was non licit in the first place, or that Lord Ross had said in my appeal before him that Sheriff Scott was wrong at my trial for not allowing me to challenge the validity of the sequestration, disembarrassing me of the conviction and upholding my appeal" LINK.

(4)  -  My expulsion from the proceedings also enabled him to ignore the entire terms of my all-important defence and to later refer to me in his written judgement in any pseudo terms he chose to suit his purpose LINK.  Not only was the dice loaded against me, I was not even allowed a throw of the loaded dice.

(5)  -  I was denied my locus standi (i.e. my right to be heard or participate in my case), in direct contravention of, inter alia, Article 6 of the Council of Europe’s Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, enshrined in UK law by the Human Rights Act 1998, which states: “In the determination of his civil rights and obligations or of any criminal charge against him, everyone is entitled to a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time … .”  The Scottish Parliament, for its part, enshrined these Articles into Scottish law in the first month of its administration, but Lord Philip chose to ignore them.

(6)  -  The Scotland Act 1998 ensures that laws passed by the Scottish Parliament can be challenged and overturned by the courts if they are not compatible with rights identified in the ECHR.  Scottish Government Ministers have 'no power to act' in a way that breaches these ECHR rights.  [Ed. ~ Today's Brexiteers would do well to remember that.]

(7)  -  Along with agents supposedly “for” and those against the Second Defender (my wife), Lord Philip predetermined a path of least resistance against the Pursuer’s case.  As expected, the time-honoured modus operandi was a litany of evasion and stonewalling.  With Lord Philip preventing me from hearing my wife’s evidence and lending her some moral support, I also missed out on further legal posturing as she was unwittingly led by the nose by both advocates.

8)  -  The posing advocates had a greater problem avoiding the essence of the case for hours on end than they would had they actually addressed it, because the facts, as laid out in the terms of my chronology, a copy with which Lord Philip was provided, are so straightforward it would be extremely difficult to deny I had an infallible case.  What took place was not a legitimate “Proof” hearing, but a lynching.  And Lord Philip totally ignored Section 40(2) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985.  The panto' was adjourned until 11 February 2000.

11.02.00  -  Eric William Robertson, in summing up the case for the Pursuer, had the colossal gall to suggest that "all aspects of the case should be considered" {my emphasis) before a final decision is made.  Lord Philip referred to this in his Opinion.  It was rich indeed in the light of the fact that Robertson went to great lengths to prevent any part of my case from being considered when on 7 May 1997 he successfully had a motion passed in court by the colluding Temporary Lord Ordinary T Gordon Coutts QC to suppress the entire 14,000 plus words of my condescendence and have it deemed irrelevant et separatim lacking in specification. LINK  Now he is saying that all aspects of the case should be considered.  If this character got any lower they would have to water him.  As mentioned hereinbefore, Eric William Robertson painstakingly avoided the very essence of the case as he fumbled aimlessly around circumstances that existed only in the backwaters of his own imagination.  He almost gossiped himself to death – aided, abetted and all but applauded by Gail Joughin and Lord Philip.

(2)  -  The endless stream of lies, fudges and slanders, pouring out both advocates’ crude, odious, repulsive language, flowed with Lord Philip’s knowledge, consent, complicity and applause - and he totally ignored Section 40(2) of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985, which requires the court to "have regard to ALL the circumstances of the case, LINK

(3)  -  The complete unfolding of this case since 1989 has seen a series of corrupt judges rubber-stamping corrupt decisions of other corrupt judges in an entirely contrived, stage-managed process.  I was in the clutches of an endlessly remorseless tyranny that abides by no code, legal or humane.  The maiden of justice was being continually raped by that tyranny.

(4)  -  Since the earliest days of my fight exposing the illegality of the Poll Tax in Scotland, since away back on 18 December 1989 in the Poll Tax officer Ian Rogers' council office LINK, not one single person presiding over the many processes, could put up an argument against my averments in exposing that illegality.  And none could make a decision on the day of the hearings.  They had to hide behind the "ad avizandum" stratagem to sidestep from making a decision in my presence, thereby avoiding my accusations of coordinated corruption.

14.06.00   -  On Wednesday, 14 June 2000, Lord Philip's "Opinion" was announced in the cause of Graham Ritchie, pursuer, against William Burns and Mrs Frances Mary Stewart or Burns, Defenders.  However, it was not announced to the Defenders themselves that day but to the media LINK.  A large convergence of newspaper and television journalists showed up at my door.  The first thing they asked was what I thought of Lord Philip's decision.  Since I was unaware that a decision had been made, I replied: "Well it shows you how professional Lord Philip is when he reveals his decision to the media before he does to those involved in the case."  After the journalists revealed Lord Philip's decision to me they repeated their initial question, to which I replied: "Lord Philip is a low-life maggot!"  I eagerly hoped I would get another day in court to answer a likely charge of "contempt of court", but no such luck.  Being cognizant of all the facts with which I had provided him, Lord Philip obviously saw no advantage in allowing me back in court to expose all the preceding corruption.

(2)  -  The BBC, STV and newspaper cameras were eagerly discharging their functions and I appeared later that day on both the TV channels' national news.   One of them (I can't remember which one) edited out the part where I called Lord Philip a low-life maggot.  Incidentally, the expenses illegally incurred by the so-called trustees was not £30,000 but was closer to double that figure, but they reduced it because it had become too much of an embarrassment.

(3)  -  Lord Philip's written "Opinion" was at pains to ignore the crux of what the case was all about, making no reference whatsoever to my defence or to the history of my battle to expose the illegality in Scotland of the poll tax.  He could not remotely equate his decision with all the facts hereinbefore mentioned so, along with all his other low-life collaborators in the extended legal system's covin, a finding was navigated from the periphery of my wife's "non defence".  It was a finding contrived by the pursuer's legal team, in cahoots with the second defender's legal team.

(4)  -  Lord Philip referred to me (the first defender, and fundamentally the only defender) in his third paragraph, stating:
"The subsequent administration of the estate has been hindered by the first defender's deliberate failure to co-operate with the trustee in any way.  To make matters worse, the trustee and other officials concerned with the administration of the estate (including myself) have received hundreds of letters from the first defender couched in abusive, offensive and defamatory terms indicating his refusal to co-operate." LINK

(5) - Of all the professions that have evolved in our society, none have ever come close to matching the legal profession for downright deceit and dishonesty. The legal profession is immutable, intransigent, self-protective, unaccountable, incompetent, and corrupt.  For over 500 years this profession has been tyrannising, misleading and oppressing the Scottish people.  To this day an insidious dark underbelly permeates throughout the Scottish legal profession.   All the while they malevolently promote themselves as the best legal system in the world to a guileless Scottish public.

(6) - See if you can identify any resemblance of the true, complete and commendable cause I fought with the false construction as laid down by Lord Philip.  You are welcome to try.   Read his official, strained Opinion LINK, which includes my well-founded interjections.  Read my supplication to the Scottish Parliament.  Incidentally, the names redacted from the official papers are Lord Philip, Gail Joughin QC and advocate Eric William Robertson. LINK

ENDS -

02.10.14   -  STV's Scotland Tonight broadcast: "Legislation is to be brought in to prevent councils from collecting historic debts resulting from the poll tax, Alex Salmond has announced.   The First Minister said: 'After 25 years it is about time that the poll tax was finally dead and buried in Scotland.'   Fears had been raised that council chiefs in Scotland could use details of the tens of thousands of people who registered to vote in the the run-up to the independence referendum in their efforts to recover old debts that are still outstanding from the controversial charge.

"The scheme, which was officially called the community charge but was more widely known as the poll tax, was introduced by Margaret Thatcher when she was Prime Minister.   It was introduced first in Scotland in 1989 before being rolled out to England and Wales a year later.

"The tax proved to be massively unpopular, sparking a large scale non-payment campaign and major protests, some of which turned into riots.   To try to avoid the levy people refused to register to vote, sparking concerns that the large-scale increase in the number of people on the electoral roll brought about by the referendum could see some of them pursued for historic tax debts.

"More than 4.2 million people in Scotland are now registered to vote, some 97% of the population.   Mr Salmond announced on Thursday that councils would not be able to take any further action to recover poll tax debts.   He said the charge, which was replaced by the council tax, had been abolished more than two decades ago.   'It is over 20 years since the poll tax came to an end and I believe the expanded electoral roll should not be used to collect poll tax debts,' Mr Salmond told MSPs at the start of First Minister's Questions.   'It is, of course, within the law for councils to use current legislation to assess current council tax liability, and given the current council tax reduction scheme protects 500,000 of our poorest citizens, the tax is being applied in a proper and fair way.   However, the relevance of information from the current electoral register to the position of debts from 25 years ago is difficult to fathom, except through some misguided political intention.'

"He said £396,000 in old tax debts had been collected by councils in Scotland last year as he announced: "It is the Government's intention to bring forward legislation to ensure that councils can take forward no further action to recover ancient poll tax debts.   He said the amount of arrears collected by councils had 'fallen to near negligible levels in recent years' and was less than £400,000 in 2013.   Authorities will be 'properly compensated in line with current collection rates in respect of outstanding amounts', Mr Salmond said, adding that the Scottish Government would 'ensure that they are not out of pocket'.

"Scottish Conservative welfare reform spokesman Alex Johnstone said: 'This can only count as a write-off if all councils are fully reimbursed for the money they have not yet received.  There is many a person in Scotland who paid this tax in good faith, and they have ended up subsidising those who can afford to pay but chose not to.  Are those hardworking people going to be reimbursed too under this initiative?   [Ed. ~ They ought to be, given that the poll tax was invalid in Scotland from the outset.]  If this is the Scottish Government’s approach on tax collection, why should anyone bother paying any tax at all?  This is a move geared towards winning a few extra votes, and is nothing but a tax-dodger’s charter'."  See the STV broadcast as it appeared that day online. LINK

03.10.14   -  The Herald reported the following day: "A MAJOR row has broken out over plans to prevent councils from trying to collect hundreds of millions of pounds of unpaid poll tax.  In a surprise announcement, First Minister Alex Salmond said the Scottish Government would legislate to ban local authorities from pursuing people for the debts dating back more than 20 years.  He said the tax, introduced in 1989 and officially named the community charge, was a hated levy and should be "consigned to the dustbin of history".

" Local councils, however, which are struggling to maintain services in the face of deep spending cuts, expressed shock at the move.  David O'Neill, president of the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (Cosla), described it as 'one of the oddest decisions ever to have come out of the Scottish Government' and said it overturned a strict duty on councils to collect all outstanding debts.

"Conservative MSP Alex Johnstone said the plan was a 'tax dodgers' charter' aimed at winning votes.  Mr Salmond's announcement yesterday follows calls for the details of voters who recently added their names to the electoral roll before the independence referendum to be used to pursue poll tax and council tax arrears.  [Ed.. ~ There were no poll tax arrears.  Council tax or rates were abolished without being replaced with a legally valid alternative in Scotland.  I could not be allowed to win my irrefutable case because everyone in Scotland would have to be reimbursed for the illegal taxes they were forced to pay; thereby bankrupting every council in Scotland.  That would not have been my fault; I just adhered to the law as it stood.] 

"The First Minister made clear it was quite proper for councils to use new information on the electoral register to recoup outstanding council tax debts.  But he said: 'The poll tax was a hated levy, which poured untold misery on communities across Scotland.  It was a hugely discredited tax, even before it was brought in - and it was rightly consigned to history just four years after its introduction in Scotland.  'It is not appropriate for councils to use current electoral records to chase arrears from decades ago.  After 25 years it is high time the poll tax is finally consigned to the dustbin of history.'

"The poll tax, brought in by the then prime minister Margaret Thatcher, replaced rates in Scotland in 1989 but was scrapped in 1993 after widespread protests.  [Ed. ~ Not forgetting that my legal case exposed the tax as illegal in Scotland, profoundly embarrassing the legal establishment and its legal mechanics, or law warehousemen.]  Some poll tax arrears have effectively been written off under laws that extinguished the unacknowledged debts after 20 years.  In addition, a number of councils have taken a decision to write off all their poll tax debts.  However, a total of £425 million is still outstanding, according to Cosla, including more than £100m owed to Glasgow, Scotland's largest local authority.

"Most councils are continuing to recover poll tax debts, albeit in relatively small amounts.  Collection has fallen from £1.3m across Scotland in 2010 to £396,000 last year.  Glasgow collects about £5,000 per year.

"The Scottish Government will bring forward a law banning future collection as part of its legislative programme, due to be unveiled after Mr Salmond steps down as First Minister next month.  Yesterday he said councils would not be compensated for the full amount they are owed but the "near negligible" amounts they recover each year.

"Mr O'Neill, a Labour councillor in North Ayrshire, said councils had until now been under pressure to maximise collection rates for all unpaid debts.  He said: 'It seems very odd that now we have an improved tool at our disposal in the form of an expanded electoral register that may help us maximise collection rates, it is the self-same Government that tells us they are going to legislate immediately to prevent us from using it.  He added: 'Cosla is very sensitive to the requirement to increase political engagement and electoral registration, but everybody recognises that becoming involved in the political process demands responsibility as well as rights.'

"MSP Alex Johnstone, welfare reform spokesman for the Tories, said: 'This is a move geared towards winning a few extra votes, and is nothing but a tax dodgers' charter.'  [Ed. ~ The above two jokers ought to have acquainted themselves with the illegality of the poll tax in Scotland.]

"Glasgow Council treasurer Paul Rooney said: 'As the First Minister knows, we are already years beyond the point at which tracing poll tax arrears ceased to be cost effective and new electoral data would not have made the slightest bit of difference to that fact.'

"This week Willie Sullivan, of the Electoral Reform Society, said using the electoral roll to pursue people for council tax arrears would harm democracy." LINK

Ludovic Kennedy ~ Let no one pretend that our system of “justice” is a search for the truth.  It is nothing of the kind.  It is a contest between two sides played according to certain rules, and if the truth happens to emerge as a result of the contest, then that is pure windfall.  But it is unlikely to.  It is not something with which the contestants are concerned.  They are only concerned that the game is played according to the rules.  There are many rules and one of them is that some questions which might provide a shortcut to the truth are not allowed to be asked, and those that are asked are not allowed to be answered.  The result is that verdicts are often reached haphazardly, for the wrong reasons, in spite of the evidence, and may or may not coincide with the literal truth.

This is a profound statement by Ludovic Kennedy, but he could well have expanded on it and simply declared  just how corrupt the civil courts are and that verdicts will almost invariably not coincide with the literal truth, and if justice does somehow prevail it will not necessarily be intentional.

Poll Tax

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Acknowledgement:
Credit to Tom Minogue for unearthing the Spec roll of dishonour and also its founding members.
Law Lords who are members of the exclusive, secretive, Masonic and highly suspect Speculative Society of Edinburgh (Spec):
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Copyright © 2016 Billy Burns.  All rights reserved.
Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young. Exposing the Illegal Poll Tax. Poll Tax. Billy Burns. Treaty of Union. Sequestration. Bankruptcy. Graham Ritchie. Ernst & Young.