Anorak News | Peter Tobin’s Legal Minefield

Peter Tobin’s Legal Minefield

by | 3rd, December 2008

THE arrest and charging of a man over a 17-year-old horrific sex murder is not likely to have been of huge interest to Anorak readers.

When Peter Tobin was arrested and accused of the murder of 15-year-old Vicky Hamilton, both pictured above in today’s Scotsman, there was an exception.

In the plethora of thread postings re the missing child Madeleine McCann it became a legal minefield for Anorak. It had been created by the persistence of one poster (unbelievably a man with some legal training) who repeatedly tried to reveal the fact Tobin was already in a Scottish jail and serving a life sentence for murder and rape.

Requests were made, they were ignored and finally a warning given.

Then, in a rare move, the poster had to be blocked/banned for what was regarded as a deliberate attempt to either affect the course of justice or simply drag Anorak into a legal mire.

The poster’s justification appeared to be: “It has appeared elsewhere. Why not Anorak?” It also seemed to be an attempt to display insider knowledge. Both were vainglorious. All good UK journalists knew the pitfalls and risks; all average newspaper readers would have remembered the very recent previous case, good lawyers wanted to see a fair trial and the irresponsibilities of other publishers has nil influence on Anorak’s editorial policies or decision process…and still does not.

Anorak sometimes has to treat very serious stories seriously.

Tobin was yesterday described by a judge as “a truly evil man … unfit to live in a decent society” as he was jailed for at least 30 years for the abduction, rape and murder of Vicky Hamilton.

It was the second conviction of this kind for Tobin, 62, who is back in his cell in Peterhead, one of Scotland’s toughest and most forbidding Category A prisoner jails. He is already serving a 21-year sentence for the murder of Polish student Angelika Kluk in Glasgow two years ago. He will never be freed.

This period, when there are no further charges, allows the freedom to say the legal minefield still exists: Tobin is suspected of up to 12 unsolved murders across the country. Police have refused to comment on how many other cases they are linking to Tobin, but said that his movements over 30 years were being analysed for answers to unsolved crimes.

The Herald says Lord Emslie, sentencing Tobin, said:

“It is hard for me to convey the loathing and revulsion that ordinary people will feel for what you have done.”

Or may have also committed…because the man would have to have an unfettered and unprejudiced future trial if charged. Tragically, that fact may prevent other charges being laid and stop some sort of closure for families of other murdered loved ones.

All that would be allegedly, of course.


Posted: 3rd, December 2008 | In: Reviews Comments (10) | TrackBack | Permalink