It’s been suggested that the Lord Advocate, Dorothy Bain QC, should recuse herself from any the investigation into the malicious prosecution of Rangers FC’s administrators because of her involvement in the saga.
Ms Bain had claimed that prosecutors involved in the malicious prosecutions did not know the legislation, The Times reports.
Eight years back, she assisted the attorneys representing David Whitehouse and Paul Clark, that had been accused of various offences regarding the takeover of their club by author Craig Whyte.
She was appointed to deal with a row over files taken during a raid of Duff and Phelps’s offices in August 2013. The firm’s services had been used when the Ibrox club dropped into administration
The company said its records included”legally privileged substances” that police weren’t allowed to inspect and demanded they’re returned. The Crown Office insisted authorities were permitted to look at them until Ms Bain procured a bill of suspension along with also a report on the police search warrant.
Messrs Whitehouse and Clark were cleared of any wrongdoing and compensated #21 million after the Crown Office admitted they’d been the victims of a malicious prosecution.
She expressed criticism of Jim Keegan QC, the advocate depute in the instance, as well as Helen Nisbet, deputy head of the serious and organised crime division and Sally Clark, a senior fiscal in the economic crime unit.
She said they failed to understand the legislation of legal privilege in Scotland and found”deficiencies at the search warrant and the failure on the part of the police to take steps to protect privileged material”.
In the affidavit, Ms Bain explained:”I was amazed in the time that Ms Clark and Ms Nisbet believed that the issue of legal privilege could be resolved by the police reviewing the materials… Ms Clark and Ms Nisbet were adamant that the police could review the material, and that the law on liberty was distinct in Scotland than in England.”
Mr Keegan, however, resisted the opinion that the documents enjoyed privilege and supported the opinion of Ms Nisbet and Ms Clark that”the rules on privilege were different in Scotland than they had been in England”. Ms Bain, however, said the set”hadn’t fully grasped the importance of legal empowerment”.
Russell Findlay, the Scottish Conservatives’ community safety spokesman, stated Ms Bain must recuse herself from further investigation. He said:”This would also preclude her consideration of the associated criminal allegations made by Mr Whitehouse.”
A Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service spokesman said:”The previous Lord Advocate, James Wolffe QC, made an announcement in the Scottish parliament and committed the Crown to additional public accountability and a process of query once all litigation has concluded.”