James Myburgh on politicsweb:
Having read these extracts Mpshe rather eloquently concluded: "It is against this broad principle of abuse of process that the conduct of Mr McCarthy must be seen and tested. The question for close consideration is encapsulated in expressions such as ‘so gravely wrong', ‘gross neglect of the elementary principles of fairness', ‘so unfair and wrong', ‘misusing or manipulating the process of the court.' If the conduct can be so categorized, it would be unconscionable for the trial to continue."
At this point it is useful to divert to a judgment handed down by Justice Conrad Seagroatt of the Hong Kong High Court on December 13 2002 (see here). One section is headed "The abuse of process - the perennial dilemma" and it - rather strikingly - cites all the British Commonwealth judgments that Mpshe's statement referred to. Even more strikingly the phrases quoted are almost all the same as well - give or take some self-serving summarising, truncation and rewriting by the NPA (see below).
Most strikingly of all are Justice Seagrott's concluding remarks. These seem to presage by some six-and-a-half years - almost to the word - the Mpshe comments quoted above. "It is against this evolved statement of broad principle" Seagrott wrote, "that the prosecution's failures and shortcomings with regard to disclosure must be seen and tested. Those for close consideration are best summed up by such expressions as ‘so gravely wrong', ‘gross neglect of the elementary principles of fairness', ‘so unfair and wrong', ‘misusing or manipulating the process of the court'. If those failures can properly be so categorized, are they such as to make it unconscionable that a re-trial should go forward?" (My emphasis)
It is rather remarkable how Mpshe's opinion of McCarthy so closely resembles that of Justice Seagrott's opinion of the prosecution in his case in Hong Kong. Their conclusions are rather similar as well. Just as Mpshe decided that "an intolerable abuse has occurred which compels a discontinuation of the prosecution", Seagrott ruled that "the failures constitute an intolerable abuse which compel intervention. Accordingly I order a permanent stay on these proceedings."