Download the letter here.
A Material relating to policy strategy in conducting their future investigations. As to that, the judge said that the real concern of the police was that they wished to put the document to several individuals who might be suspects. They considered that there was a risk that if information about the document was published, that would give potential interviewees the opportunity to frustrate the investigation.
B Material of a factual nature: The police regarded the document in question as a key document in the investigation into the perversion of the course of justice, whose deployment was a matter of real interest and concern and the police were for that reason concerned about it receiving advanced publicity in the media. The document was not an email, it ran to several pages and contained far more information. There was a real question mark as to whether Mr Powell, the addressee, ever received it and the investigating officers were very interested to discover whether he did so or not.
C Material related to Mr John McTernan, director of political operations at Downing Street.
The Indy reckons Levy ‘feels let down and is about to turn on the Labour Party, the Sunday Times says Blair aides ‘plotted’ to foil police.
If (as is widely believed around Westminster) McTernan has grassed about the alleged cover-up, then Powell, previously perceived as too clever to get caught, could also be in trouble and dodgy donor Chris Evans can expect his day in court as well.
Well perhaps he should stop ringing up political editors and briefing them in that case? All those unnamed “friends” quoted in the press are him, briefing…
How can an email have multiple sources Nick?
UPDATE :Subsequent revelations point to it being a document rather than an email, it apparently was prepared for Ruth’s lawyers or perhaps originally intended for Powell’s eyes. Possibly it was produced on the legendary Downing Street Lotus Notes system.
The BBC appears to be in a position to stand up the story going around in mid-January about a “Smoking Gun” email. Why else would the police want to injunct the story unless it was correct and revealing? The question is, who passed the email to the Beeb and what is their motive?
Fact : the BBC does not do cheque-book journalism.
Fact : Yates’ team are, whatever the spin from Downing Street apologists, very tight-lipped.
When news of arrests and interviews has come out, it has more often than not been from the politicians themselves. Given that the Beeb didn’t buy this story, who profits from revealing crucial police evidence? Not the investigators, which is why the police sought to suppress the story, because defence lawyers could make much mischief, and probably will, with the “trial by media” line.
To quote the most famous detective of all, “If you eliminate the impossible, whatever is left, even if improbable, must be true.” Those under investigation, now that they believe it no longer possible to “fix” the CPS because of the evidence known to have been discovered, have the most to benefit from bringing the evidence into the public domain. The desperadoes of Downing Street would not be above leaking against themselves, tactically it would also allow them to portray themselves as victims of media savvy police investigators. They already brief that the police are “theatrical” and whine that they are unable to publicly defend themselves from the “trial by media”.
These are dangerous times for Downing Street’s toughest street fighters. The gloves are definitely off, which is why Guido thinks this leak has Downing Street’s fingerprints on it.
Well the mental pressure must be immense, what will his defence be? Guido fears it may all get too much for him in the way that it did for Ernie Saunders. Whatever happened to Ernie?
Variations on these are going round Westminster:
Q. What do you have to be get off Loans-for-Lordship’s charges?
A. Ruthless. Q. What do you call Labour Party HQ without Loans-for-Lordships?
Levy isn’t laughing…
If anybody wants to step up to the plate and bet that nobody will be charged, do email Guido.
Still haven’t seen a payment from the Observer’s Mark Townsend. He predicted the investigation would be all over in October. The Speccie’s Fraser Nelson is studying the wine list. Anyone else care to risk reputation and wallet?
Update : An Über-Blairite-Ultra-Outrider has emailed to say he is on for “20 notes”. Presumably he means £20. Though he should note they don’t print pound notes nowadays.
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The Prime Minister feels the pressure:
“I have to say that after the events I have been facing over the last few days, assassination would be a welcome release.”