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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
When the US tell UK to bend over, we bend over!

I am disgusted that this lady could literally getting away from murder under diplomatic immunity, so much for justice from a so called democratic country!!

 

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My view is that diplomatic immunity is not for life. Drawing on other cases, it appears that if Ann Sacoolas was driving for personal reasons and not for official function, then she might become exposed to arrest when her diplomatic immunity lapses. In these cases Red Notices can be surprisingly penalising, and the USA might still persuade her to volunteer herself up.


Case study:
Ex-envoy not protected by immunity said:
Dr Ionescu is not compelled to return to Singapore because there is no Extradition Treaty (ET) between Singapore and Romania.

It is not because he enjoys diplomatic immunity, said the Romanian government.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said this in response to media queries regarding the issue of diplomatic immunity.

Singapore has asked the Romanian government to do what it can to persuade (and not arrest or compel) Dr Ionescu that it is in his own interest and in Romania's interest, to return to Singapore to stand trial.

As Dr Ionescu is no longer serving as the Charge d'Affaires of the Romanian Embassy in Singapore, his immunity for acts performed outside of his function as a diplomat would have lapsed.

It is clear from the findings of the Coroner's Inquiry that the acts for which Dr Ionescu has been charged were not pursuant to his official functions.

Dr Ionescu was using the Embassy vehicle in his private capacity and for his private purposes. As such, with effect from Dr Ionescu's recall, he no longer enjoys diplomatic immunity for the acts in question.

Therefore, there was no need for a waiver of diplomatic immunity by Romania and no need for Singapore to seek a waiver.

Ex-envoy makes "wild babblings" in Romanian interview

In a recent interview with Romanian tabloid Libertatea, Dr Silviu Ionescu , has made statements the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) have termed "wild babblings"

When asked by the media about the interview MFA Spokesman said: "We cannot take the wild babblings of a desperate man too cowardly to face up to his own responsibilities seriously."

In the interview, the former charge d'affaires said he would be hanged if he returned to Singapore, where the prosecution has prepared 13 criminal charges against him.

He claimed to have been targeted by the Singapore Government and had long asked for a transfer to a new posting - even if it was Moldova, Romania's smaller neighbour in Eastern Europe.

In an online translation posted on a Singapore news website, Ionescu was quoted as saying, "If I were to be judged in Singapore, I would hang. I know, for drunk-driving accidents, Singapore condemns you to death by hanging."
 

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Discussion Starter #4

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Thanks @Colin Mclean for confirming.

I suspect US change of tune is a response to international concern (UN, EU, Interpol, etc.) rather than UK specific.
 

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Thanks @Colin Mclean for confirming.

I suspect US change of tune is a response to international concern (UN, EU, Interpol, etc.) rather than UK specific.
Apparently they realised that diplomatic immunity ends when she left the country.

They were going to pursue her with a civil case, but it appears she may be extradited if a UK court rules it necessary.
 

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Apparently they realised that diplomatic immunity ends when she left the country.
This makes no sense at all. It means any diplomat who broke the law in a foreign country could (in theory) be extradited back as soon as they went home. It would just be a temporary immunity.

There is some odd stuff going on behind the scenes here I think.
 

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This makes no sense at all. It means any diplomat who broke the law in a foreign country could (in theory) be extradited back as soon as they went home.
If they have an extradition treaty, yes. Not all countries do.

Of course this hasn’t gone to court yet so we don’t actually know if there’s a case for the woman’s prosecution.
 

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This makes no sense at all. It means any diplomat who broke the law in a foreign country could (in theory) be extradited back as soon as they went home. It would just be a temporary immunity.
I am now in the realm of guesswork:

Earlier readings suggest the matrix of possibilities include whether the act occurred while the 'diplomat' was performing an official function, or if it the act occurred during a private endeavour - it sounds as though the latter applies in this case.

My assumption is that to prosecute in the first scenario requires the immunity to be officially waved; whereas to prosecute for the latter the immunity must simply lapse.

I suspect all immunities lapse at the end of an assignment. In this case I assume the 'assignment' was to accompany her husband in the UK during which there was no official function.

As an aside,

 

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Discussion Starter #11
If they have an extradition treaty, yes. Not all countries do.

Of course this hasn’t gone to court yet so we don’t actually know if there’s a case for the woman’s prosecution.
I suspect she'll be given a light sentence if or when she goes to court...
 

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I am disgusted that this lady could literally getting away from murder
You know... this is literally rubbish.

Unless you are saying she decided that day to go out and kill a motorcyclist then you're talking shit.

It is terribly tragic, as every road accident is. But there are dozens every day, and it's because people are idiots, not murderers.

Let the court weight the culpability and apply the punishment where necessary, and if it serves a judicial purpose to do so.

Revenge may feel good but it can drag us all down to barbarism in times of tragedy.
 

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Here is an example which illustrates what could happen if all the circumstances of the accident are taken into account. But the actions of Mrs Sacoolas by leaving the country after indicating that she wouldn’t, doesn’t help her case in legal or credibility terms. Also, these actions will not help the career prospects of those who authorised the immunity and travel arrangement.

Note: my previous info on diplomatic immunity referred to the United Nations which my have some differences to government procedure.

 

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Here is an example which illustrates what could happen if all the circumstances of the accident are taken into account. But the actions of Mrs Sacoolas by leaving the country after indicating that she wouldn’t, doesn’t help her case in legal or credibility terms. Also, these actions will not help the career prospects of those who authorised the immunity and travel arrangement.

Note: my previous info on diplomatic immunity referred to the United Nations which my have some differences to government procedure.

Quite so. It is a tragic accident, hint is in the word there. To have left the country by these means is her criminal culpability, if that was her choice to make, which it might not have been.

The accident was 'an accident'. This is really a diplomatic issue now, because it is not testing the morality of 'car accidents' it is testing the meaning of diplomatic immunity.

I have done this myself, except not having the accident, but only by good fortune, not by good driving. I stayed at a rural B&B in Germany and got up early for a long trip, pulling out on to a quiet road without any other traffic to remind me of which side it was due to be on, and no direction signs on the right to hint at the issue. I drove a km or more before realising I was on the wrong side of the road. It scared the bejeezus out of me, TBH, and that's not through lack of experience, I had routinely driven on the right for much of the previous decade.

I can picture exactly the same scenario here, she pulled out of a US base (that maybe were driving on the right as she approached the security exit, they do that sort of thing) then had to pull on to a quiet country road and convert to the left. On a quiet road, without any other traffic around, this was almost certainly not 'thoughtless' and lacking judgement, just particularly 'careless' with terrible consequences.

An investigation might also look at the exit roads from the base, it is not impossible those could be found to fail to help drivers leaving the base to re-orient themselves, and the root cause is bad road design at that location.

It's a tragic accident. Leaving the country was a criminal error, but we should also bear in mind she would have surely informed US State Dept (she had had contact with the UK Authorities so she'd have had to report that, I presume) and they would surely have instructed her. They wouldn't have simply said, "OK, thanks for letting us know, we'll make a note of you killing someone, come home if you feel like it." But those sorts of dialogues are utterly confidential, so she would be expected to fall on her sword than reveal such instructions.

The problem is that once anything like that happens, there is a real possibility of becoming manipulated by other parties, such as the Police themselves. The Police are not free of criminal insiders and the possibility of a senior Police officer with nefarious intentions, and possibly paid by external parties, might then be in a position to extract concessions from her. "I'll make it go away if you tell me what your husband is working on...." The State Dept would surely have said "Get on a plane now".

I am not defending anyone at all, but just think it through, people. I think the situation is actually more complex than people's gut reactions. For all we know, she might have already left a signed statement with the police stating she was on the wrong side of the road, ergo, really, is there anything more she could do than take a punishment that could be given in absentia, with no risk of coercive manipulation?

She does not need to be here to be judged for that, and her admission of guilt would be taken into account. If a prison sentence is decided then she can fulfil that under the direction of the State Dept, which may occur in the US for security reasons.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
You know... this is literally rubbish.

Unless you are saying she decided that day to go out and kill a motorcyclist then you're talking shit.

It is terribly tragic, as every road accident is. But there are dozens every day, and it's because people are idiots, not murderers.

Let the court weight the culpability and apply the punishment where necessary, and if it serves a judicial purpose to do so.

Revenge may feel good but it can drag us all down to barbarism in times of tragedy.
You are right!
I am talking shit, so how would you call somebody who did a hit and run.

PS I didn't say she was a murderer, only said literally getting away from murder?
 

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You are right!
I am talking shit, so how would you call somebody who did a hit and run.
1) Is there any indication it was a hit and run? I have not seen that.
2) She was scared and too shocked, the brain has a habit of trying to ignore difficult-to-accept facts. (You just need to read through half the threads here! ;) )
3) She was instructed by State Dept not to stop after an RTA.
4) Both 2 & 3.

PS I didn't say she was a murderer, only said literally getting away from murder?
Word games. That's calling her a murderer. If not, who are you saying committed this murder she was getting away from?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Because of her US citizen status and her hubby working for the government, even though she no longer has immunity, guess we'll find out soon enough.

Its the special relationship scratching each other's back.

Or put it another way, whatever sentence she's going to get will be less than other normal mortals.
 

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Because of her US citizen status and her hubby working for the government, even though she no longer has immunity, guess we'll find out soon enough.

Its the special relationship scratching each other's back.

Or put it another way, whatever sentence she's going to get will be less than other normal mortals.
You're clearly not going not be satisfied with any outcome, and in fact your anticipated response is probably exactly the reason the State Dept wants to withdraw her from the affair, they will not 'win' in any way, in your eyes, so why bother wasting effort trying.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
1) Is there any indication it was a hit and run? I have not seen that.
2) She was scared and too shocked, the brain has a habit of trying to ignore difficult-to-accept facts. (You just need to read through half the threads here! );)
3) She was instructed by State Dept not to stop after an RTA.
4) Both 2 & 3.


Word games. That's calling her a murderer. If not, who are you saying committed this murder she was getting away from?
1) see answer 3
2) i didn't know you are a psychiatrist?
3) exactly, she did not stop, if that's not hit and run, I don't know what is?

English isn't my mother tongue, but your English is obviously worse than mine.
It is you who's turning this into a word game.
Are you seriously implying that if anybody uses the sentence "...literally getting away from murder" means the person is a murderer? Seriously?
 
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