Rough justice

KENNY MacAskill should hang his head in shame. By ending the need for corroboration in criminal trials, he is, with a few clicks of his keyboard, sweeping away a fundamental strength of Scots law (your report, 21 June).

If the Scottish justice secretary was intent on increasing the successful prosecution of rape cases and other sexual offences, he should have been brave and abolished the adversarial system in such cases.

It is not the requirement for corroboration in such cases that causes the woefully low prosecution rate but the appalling treatment that many of the victims receive at the hands of the defence.

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However, rather than be brave, Mr MacAskill has opened the door to the potential use of confessions obtained under ­duress, one of the prime reasons for requiring corroboration.

Niall Garvie

Bromley, Kent

I was most disturbed to read of the intention of the Scottish government to abolish the requirement for corroboration in Scots law. The government has decided to act against the advice of our judiciary and intends to dispense with a valuable safeguard for the citizen.

Though I have been a member of the SNP for many decades I do hope that the Scottish Parliament will manage to throw out this absurd proposal and that my party will be forced to rethink.

R Mill Irving

Gifford, East Lothian